How to make money with livestock feed production in Nigeria

Have you for once considered livestock feed production business as a real source of income or side hustle?

People are bagging money right from their homes producing bags of livestock feed day in day out, and you can also be part of these successful business people.

You can operate from any place of your choice and in any scale that you can afford.

Most livestock farmers have one major goal in mind, and that is raising healthy and fat livestock.

Yes, livestock farmers want their herds to be fat so that they can be attractive to buyers as most livestock are sold based on their weights and how healthy they look.

Overview of Livestock Feed Production In Nigeria

I know by now, that it’s no longer a new thing hearing that both big and small scale livestock farmers in Nigeria are making it so big.

Therefore, you can be making a huge profit too if you can start a business that will give them what would help them achieve their objective of healthy and fat animals.

Imagine that you are producing fish feed. A farmer operating fish farm will want his fishes to be big and weigh high on scale.

A fish well-fed can weigh more than two to three fishes not well fed with quality feeds. To achieve that depends solely on good feed made with the right ingredients.

livestock-feed-for animals

For the animals to be healthy, they must feed on good foods, made with the right ingredients like whole wheat, bone meal, palm kernel cake, oyster shells, and a lot of other ingredients.

Hence, there is a great need for animal feed production.

There is an increasing number of investors in the livestock farming business and it gives room for livestock feed production to boom.

This is a business that can give an attractive return on investments for a very long time and since it’s not a highly competitive business, I advise you to give it serious consideration.

Your feed production can be started on a very small scale so limited capital is not a challenge.

Animal feed production has suddenly become a necessity as a result of having so many thriving livestock farms in Nigeria.

For example, poultry farming requires lots of feed and this is one of the reasons feed production business will make you money, on a regular basis.

Yes, in case you don’t know nor haven’t paid enough attention towards that angle, livestock feed production is the next big thing in the country and you can tap into that opportunity.

What Exactly Is Livestock Feed

Livestock feed, Feed manufacturing or Animal feed refers to the process of producing animal feed from raw agricultural products. 

Fodder produced by manufacturing is formulated to meet specific animal nutrition requirements for different species of animals at different life stages.

Animal feed is food given to domestic animals in the course of animal husbandry.

There are two basic types: fodder and forage. Used alone, the word feed more often refers to fodder.

Classification of Animal Feeds

Animal feeds have been broadly classified as follows:

Concentrates: High in energy, contains mainly cereal grains and their byproducts, or is prepared from high-protein oil meals or cakes, and byproducts resulting from sugar beets and sugarcane processing.

Roughage: grass pastures, or plant parts like hay, silage, root crops, straw, and stover.

Diets given to different species are all not the same.

For example, livestock animals are fed on a diet that consists mainly of roughages, while poultry, swine, and fish are fed with concentrates.

Livestock in a feedlot may be fed with energy feeds which usually come from grains, supplied alone or as part of a total mixed ration.

There is various livestock feed that you can venture into.

Please note that all these types of livestock feed can be included in your business and you can decide to pick one or two if you will like to stand out and be homogenous in the livestock feed production business.

Types of Animal Feed

The types of animal feed include the following:

  • Bird feed
  • Cattle feeding
  • Dog food

If you’re into dog business in Nigeria, you know already that dog food doesn’t come in as many shapes, colors, sizes, and flavors as human food, there are still quite a few varieties to choose from.

No matter which type you choose, the most important factor in your decision should be producing a portion of food that meets all the dog’s nutritional needs.

Some of the types of dog food include:

Kibble/Dry – Dry food is the most economical type of commercial dog food, and this is the reason that many owners choose it for their dog.

It also lasts for a long time and does not need to be refrigerated. Use wholesome food as the primary ingredient.

Canned – Most dogs love canned, or wet, food; it has a long shelf life.

For some owners, it’s definitely worth the expense, for that reason make sure it provides much digestible protein.

Indigestible protein will pass through the dog’s system without being broken down into absorbable nutrients, so it’s pretty much useless to it.

Be sure it is 100% nutritionally complete.

Semi-Moist – Commercial dog foods shaped like pork chops, burgers, or other meaty foods are called semi-moist foods.

These kinds of foods are the least nutritional of all dog foods and contain many artificial flavors and colorings.

Other types of livestock feed include:

  • Equine nutrition
  • Pet food
  • Pig feed

If you’re into pig farming in Nigeria, you should know that cereal grains are a good feed source although they are best utilized by the pig if they have been cracked, rolled or soaked.

Animal feed and nutrition

The major ingredients used are wheat, barley, and lupins, but other grains such as peas, canola meal, and triticale are also used.

To produce a well-balanced diet, a range of other ingredients should be included in smaller amounts e.g. meat meal, fishmeal, soybean meal, blood meal, tallow, minerals, vitamins, salt, limestone.

Pig diets can also be supplemented with fresh fruit and vegetables however you must be certain that the feedstuff cannot be classified as swill.)

Poultry feed (Poultry birds require different food formations at different stages of their lives. Some of the feed required is chicks mash, layers mash, broiler mash, and growers mash.)

More animal feed types are:

  • Sheep husbandry
  • Fish feed

(Processed feeds are formulated to meet basic nutritional requirements of fish.

If you’ve started fish farming business in Nigeria, quality fish feeds are supplemented with proper vitamins and minerals as well.

The processed dry feed includes flake, tablet, pellet, and crumb form.

Some dry feeds are designed to float, while other are designed to sink in order to incorporate bottom feeders.

In fact, some pellets are even designed to stick to the surface of the aquarium glass in order to feed fish at mid-level.

Starting a Small Scale Livestock Feed Production Business

Even if you don’t have money to start it right away, you can start small.

You can leverage from those that have the equipment and grow your customer base and make enough money to procure your own equipment for full-time production in the shortest time possible.

What you need to start with is getting the right formula, which is the ingredients to put and the ratio to be used.

The ingredient is what makes a good animal feed, so first, you have to come up with a unique formula.

As a new entrant with low capital, do some research and come up with a unique formula and look for feed producers with the needed equipment to rent from to produce your own brand.

I know that a lot of feed producers in Nigeria allow you to rent their machines or produce and package your animal feed brand for you at a fee.

Embark on aggressive marketing by giving sample livestock feeds to farmers, do that over and over and within a short time, you are sure to have your own machine for maximum productions.

Also, be sure to make your packaging unique and attractive, and offer to do home delivery to farmers.

That way, you will build your customers base faster and will soon be in a position to purchase your own equipment.

Trust me, as long as your feed is of good quality and you are the hardworking and focused type, you will have your own equipment in no time.

When you are ready to get your equipment, then you can expand your business and upgrade to medium or large scale animal feed production.

Requirements for Animal Feed Production Business In Nigeria

The following requirements are what will be needed to start your livestock feed production business:

Feed Formulation 

With the right knowledge of what you want to specialize in, spend some time to learn about nutritional needs.

Of course, the formula for dog feed would be different from chicken feed likewise those of other livestock.

To come up with a good formula, you should learn about the nutritional requirements of the category of animals you want to produce for.

You may request the assistance of an expert in animal nutrition to help you come up with the right formula.

Common nutritional needs are protein, vitamins, fiber and carbohydrate.

This is the most important aspect of your feed production business and you must take all necessary steps to ensure that you get it right.

Ingredients

When you have come up with the right feed formula you can start purchasing ingredients based on what you would need.

Some of the ingredients you can purchase are Maize, Corn, Cassava grits for energy, Wheat offal as a source of protein, Noodle wastes for carbohydrate and Proteins, Soybean meal, Fish meals Palm kernel cake, Oyster shells, Bone meals, Minerals, and common Salt.

Equipment

These are the equipment you would need to start a full livestock feed production business of your own.

These Equipment required for production include wet and dry Grinders, Wet/dry Mixers, freezer, Crumblier, Pellets, cooker, Elevators, Conveyors, Sifter, Sealers, and Bag sewers, Weighing scales, Steam boiler, Generating set and Packaging bag.

This is just to give you an idea of some of the commonly used machines in livestock feed production but the specific equipment that you would need would depend on the type of feeds you want to produce.

You can buy already made equipment or have one custom made for you.

Packaging

The next important thing to think about is how to package your manufactured feed.

Give the livestock farmer various sizes to choose from and make sure to stick with what you are known for.

Your customers would want sizes that are sufficient to feed their herds for a specific period of time and would also be affordable. It is best to have different sizes.

Marketing

This aspect is as important as every other requirement that has been mentioned.

Selling your products repeatedly is an objective that always inspires all investors as much as it should inspire you.

So you need to come up with marketing strategies that will entice and reach your prospective customers.

There are various means you can choose from and listed below are a few:

  • Supply to stores: An option to consider is selling to livestock feed stores.

Look around for animal feed or pet supply stores and introduce your products to them with some free samples that they can sell to their clients and leave your contact details with them.

As long as your product is very good, livestock farmers who were lucky enough to buy the samples would demand it again and that would force the sellers to call you for a restock.

You can also get direct referrals from the end users but not from the stores you supplied to as that would cut their customers from them.

Instead, have your contacts discretely inserted into the bag if end-user wishes, he can contact you from there himself directly.

  • Use of sales representatives:

Get sales representatives and give them enough incentive and attractive commissions to keep them motivated and encouraged.

One strategy to motivate them more to be up and doing is to reward them on commission basis instead of fixed salary.

They would be encouraged to work harder because they know that their earnings are based on how many products they are able to sell.

Just ensure that the commissions are reasonable.

  • Personal Distribution Outlet:

If you can and have enough capital to set up your own store, then it won’t hurt to have your own sales outlet for your livestock feed brand.

  • Sell online:

This is the next big channel used by farmers, producers and manufactures to promote, advertise and sell their products because there is nothing that cannot be sold online these days.

Therefore, make use of the different social media and online tools available to promote your animal feed production business.

Summary Notes on Livestock Feed Production Business

It makes sense to invest in animal feed production in Nigeria where over 70% of the cost of operating a farm is spent on feeding.

The market is large, expanding and sustainable.

Other source of income for the investors includes processing for other poultry farmers and trading on the raw material.

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A freelance writer and researcher on various subjects aimed at human capital development. I'm also a project presentation speaker

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