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Agriculture

Making a Living: Poultry Farming Careers in Nigeria

Last Updated on July 5, 2023

Introduction

Poultry farming is a lucrative sector in Nigeria that provides employment opportunities for youths and adults. This topic is important as it sheds light on various career paths available in poultry farming while promoting food security and economic growth.

With the increasing demand for poultry products, the industry presents a promising investment opportunity for entrepreneurs and farmers.

Understanding the requirements for a successful poultry farming career, such as access to capital, proper infrastructure, and sound management practices is crucial, and this blog chapter seeks to provide valuable insights in that regard.

Further, it explores the challenges faced by poultry farmers in Nigeria, including disease outbreaks and regulations, and how to overcome them for sustainable growth.

Therefore, whether you are an aspiring farmer or an agricultural enthusiast, this chapter will equip you with the necessary knowledge to excel in poultry farming as a career.

Read: Essential Guide to Crop Farming Jobs in Nigeria

Benefits of Poultry Farming

Poultry farming is an integral aspect of the agricultural sector in Nigeria, with a vast potential for economic growth, job creation, and food production. Below are some of the benefits of poultry farming in Nigeria:

  1. Economic Growth: According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the poultry industry contributed over 25% to the agricultural sector’s gross domestic product (GDP) in Nigeria in 2019.

    This signifies the enormous potential for poultry farming in the country’s economy. If adequately harnessed, it could provide a boost to the agricultural sector, create more jobs, and improve the standard of living for Nigerians.

  2. Job Creation: Poultry farming provides employment opportunities for individuals at various levels of education and skill. The industry has a wide range of jobs available, including farming, marketing, distribution, and processing.

    According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), the agricultural sector in Nigeria accounts for about 30% of total employment. Hence, promoting the growth of the poultry industry will increase job opportunities and reduce unemployment.

  3. Food Production: Poultry farming is essential for sustainable food production. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), poultry products such as eggs and meat provide valuable sources of protein, minerals, and vitamins to humans.

    With the growing population in Nigeria, there is a high demand for poultry products, and if adequately harnessed, the industry can contribute significantly to food security.

  4. Nutrition: Poultry products are essential sources of nutrients, especially for children and pregnant women.

    Eggs and meat are rich in vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, Iron, and Zinc, which are crucial for good health. Therefore, the growth of the poultry industry will contribute to a healthy population.

  5. Foreign Exchange Earnings: Nigeria has a high demand for poultry products, and a significant amount of these products is imported.

    Developing the poultry industry in Nigeria will reduce the country’s importation rate and conserve foreign exchange. This, in turn, can help boost the country’s economy and reduce the country’s reliance on imports.

Statistics show that the demand for poultry products in Nigeria is high. According to a report by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Nigeria produces over 1.2 million metric tons (MT) of poultry meat annually.

However, the demand for poultry products in the country is far greater than what is produced locally. For instance, the demand for broiler meat in Nigeria is projected to reach 3.8 million MT by 2023, while the local production is expected to reach only 2.9 million MT.

In general, the benefit of poultry farming in Nigeria is enormous. The industry’s potential for economic growth, job creation, and food production is vast, and with adequate investment, it can contribute significantly to the country’s development.

To achieve this, the government needs to create enabling policies that will support the industry, and investors must be willing to invest in the poultry sector to promote its growth and development.

Read: Key Agricultural Professions: Boosting Nigeria’s Economy

Types of Poultry Farms

Poultry farming is a lucrative industry in Nigeria, with numerous types of poultry farms available for investment. Let’s take a look at each type of poultry farm and what they entail:

1. Broiler Farming:

Broiler farming is one of the most common types of poultry farming in Nigeria. It involves raising chickens specifically for meat production.

The chickens are typically slaughtered between 6-8 weeks after hatching, bringing in considerable revenue for the farmer. The birds are housed in large poultry houses, that are equipped with automated feeding and watering systems for ease of management.

2. Layers Farming:

Layer farming is another type of poultry farming that involves raising chickens for egg production. Chickens are kept on the farm for between 18-72 weeks and can lay between 250-300 eggs per year.

Layer farming requires a considerable investment in terms of equipment and infrastructure, as the layers must be housed in well-ventilated and stress-free environments.

3. Backyard Farming:

Backyard farming is another option for people who wish to start poultry farming on a smaller scale.

It involves rearing of a small number of poultry birds such as chicken, turkey, guinea fowl, ducks and geese, within the premises of one’s residence.

This type of farming typically requires minimal financial investment, although the level of returns is also limited.

Differences in Scale, Equipment, and Management Practices

The differences in scale, equipment and management practices of these poultry farms are significant. They include:

1. Scale:

Broiler farming is a large scale operation that requires a considerable investment in terms of land, infrastructure, and equipment.

Layer farming is also a large scale operation, requiring a sizeable investment to start. Backyard farming, on the other hand, requires only a small amount of land and equipment making it the smallest of all three types of poultry farming.

2. Equipment:

The type of equipment required for each type of farming is also different. Broiler farming requires specialised equipment such as brooders, hatchers, feeders and waterers.

Layer farming requires egg-laying cages, nests boxes while backyard farming requires minimal equipment such as feeding and watering instruments.

3. Management Practices:

The management practices involved in each type of poultry farming are also different. Broiler farming requires more attention to detail, as the birds reach maturity quicker than layers.

It requires better feeding and watering management, biosecurity measures, good quality housing and daily health monitoring.

Layer farming also requires close attention to feed, water supply, and poultry house sanitation. Backyard farming requires minimal management practices as the number of birds reared is small.


In essence, there are different types of poultry farming in Nigeria, each having its own unique advantages and challenges.

Broiler and layer farming are large scale operations that require considerable investments and specialised equipment, while backyard farming is a small-scale operation that requires minimal investments and equipment.

The management practices involved in each type of farming vary, with each requiring its level of attention and management practices.

Investing in poultry farming is a viable option for those looking to make a living in Nigeria, but one must be aware and educated on which type of poultry farming would bring the most returns.

Read: Paving Your Career Path: Agribusiness Roles in Nigeria

Starting a Poultry Farming Career in Nigeria

Starting a poultry farming career in Nigeria can be a profitable venture if you have the right knowledge and resources. Here are the steps to starting a successful poultry farming career in Nigeria:

Acquiring Land

  1. Research and select a suitable location for your poultry farm

  2. Ensure that the land is suitable for poultry farming and has access to clean water and adequate ventilation

  3. Secure the necessary permits and documentation from the government

Selecting the Right Breeds

  1. Research and select a breed that is suitable for the Nigerian climate

  2. Consider factors such as egg production, meat quality, and disease resistance when selecting your breed

  3. Source your birds from reputable breeders and ensure that they are vaccinated before purchase

Securing Financing

  1. Develop a comprehensive business plan and financial projections

  2. Approach investors or financial institutions for funding or loans

  3. Consider alternative sources of funding such as agricultural grants or crowdfunding

While starting a poultry farming career in Nigeria can be a lucrative venture, it is important to be aware of the challenges you may face. These include:

Disease Outbreaks

Poultry farming can be susceptible to disease outbreaks that can wipe out entire flocks. It is important to invest in proper biosecurity measures and ensure that your birds are vaccinated and regularly checked by a vet.

Market Fluctuations

The poultry market can be unpredictable, with factors such as seasonal demand and pricing fluctuations affecting profitability. It is important to have a marketing strategy in place and diversify your products to weather these fluctuations.

Government Regulations

The Nigerian government regulates poultry farming to ensure that it meets certain standards. This includes obtaining the necessary permits and adhering to the rules and regulations set by regulatory bodies such as the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC). It is important to stay up to date with these regulations to avoid penalties.

Despite these challenges, poultry farming can be a rewarding career in Nigeria. With a solid business plan, the right resources and a bit of perseverance, you can build a successful poultry farming business and make a living while contributing to the Nigerian economy.

Making a Living: Poultry Farming Careers in Nigeria

Career Opportunities in Poultry Farming

Poultry farming is an essential industry in Nigeria with a growing demand for poultry products. As the industry continues to expand, so do the career opportunities available. Below are some of the career paths in the Nigerian poultry farming industry:

Farm Management

Responsible for overseeing the day-to-day activities on the poultry farm

  1. Qualifications: A degree in agriculture, animal science, or a related field. Experience in farm management is an added advantage.

  2. Skills: Excellent problem-solving skills, strong communication, and leadership skills. Good knowledge of farm management software is an added advantage.

Poultry Nutritionist

Responsible for developing and formulating poultry feed rations

  1. Qualifications: A degree in animal science, nutrition, or a related field. Certification from professional bodies such as the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) is an added advantage.

  2. Skills: Excellent knowledge of nutrition and feed formulation, attention to detail, strong problem-solving skills, and the ability to work independently.

Veterinary Services

Responsible for ensuring the health and wellbeing of the poultry birds

  1. Qualifications: A degree in veterinary medicine and certification from the Veterinary Council of Nigeria. Specialization in poultry veterinary medicine is an added advantage

  2. Skills: Excellent diagnostic and analytical skills, strong communication skills, attention to detail, and the ability to work well under pressure.

Poultry Sales and Marketing

Responsible for promoting and selling poultry and poultry products

  1. Qualifications: A degree in marketing, business administration, or a related field. Prior experience in sales and marketing is an added advantage.

  2. Skills: Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, sales and marketing expertise, ability to multitask, and strong customer service skills.

Poultry Production

Responsible for ensuring appropriate rearing and feeding of the poultry birds

  1. Qualifications: A degree in animal science, agriculture, or a related field. Experience in poultry production is an added advantage.

  2. Skills: Excellent knowledge of poultry production, ability to work under pressure, attention to detail, strong problem-solving skills, and the ability to work independently.

Generally, there are various career opportunities available in the Nigerian poultry farming industry. However, the qualifications and skills required for each career path differ. Therefore, anyone interested in a career in the industry must choose the career path that aligns with their qualifications and skill set.

Read: Exploring Top 10 Lucrative Agriculture Professions in Nigeria

Conclusion

After taking a closer look at the opportunities and challenges of poultry farming in Nigeria, here are the key takeaways:

  1. Poultry farming is a growing industry in Nigeria, with a high demand for poultry products like eggs and meat.

  2. There are various career options in the poultry farming industry, including chicken breeding, egg production, poultry feed production, and veterinary services.

  3. Poultry farming requires specific skills, such as animal husbandry, management, and marketing, which can be acquired through training and experience.

  4. One of the primary challenges of poultry farming in Nigeria is the lack of adequate infrastructure support, including access to finance, equipment, and training facilities.

  5. To overcome these challenges, potential poultry farmers need to develop a business plan, conduct thorough research, and seek support from relevant stakeholders, including government agencies, financial institutions, and industry associations.

Therefore, if you are considering a career in the agricultural sector, poultry farming could be an excellent option to explore in Nigeria.

It offers various career opportunities with considerable earning potential and an opportunity to contribute to the country’s food security and economic development.

By making a deliberate effort to acquire necessary skills and research extensively, you can make a successful career in the poultry farming industry.

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