are turkeys a good investment?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by bravevline, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. bravevline

    bravevline Songster

    Apr 30, 2013
    my grandfather wants to get a few turkeys, but we were wondering about how well the poults sell and egg production.
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Egg production isn't great. Most eggs are reserved for hatching.
    If you can develop a market for pastured heritage turkeys for Thanksgiving and Christmas there can be good money there.
  3. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

    Feb 20, 2008
    Opelousas, Louisiana
    I can only speak for me and my Bourbon Red Turkeys ARE a GREAT investment. This year, I had 12 hens and egg production was EXCELLENT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They literally layed hundreds of eggs. I sold (locally and shipped out to different states) dozens and dozens and dozens of eggs. I sold my eggs for $3.00 per egg/$36.00 per dozen. My poults sold for $12.00 each and I sold a ton of poults. I did keep some poults for myself for next year's breeding.. I recently sold a hen for $75.00. I use to sell the hens for $50.00 and the toms for $40.00 but due to an increase in the popularity of hens, I increased my price to $75.00. I will probably increase the price of my toms for $50.00.

    I guess your area will dictate if there is a good market for turkeys. In my area, there IS a market for turkeys. I have people on a waiting list for 2014 for eggs, poults and hens. I plan to make the same profit if not more next year. So check your area and see if people are interested in turkeys.
  4. A.T. Hagan

    A.T. Hagan Don't Panic

    Aug 13, 2007
    North/Central Florida
    I believe you will find producing the birds will be the easy part. Marketing them at a profit is where you are most likely to run into difficulty.

    It can be done, but you have to work at it, specifically in the advertising to grow your customer base. Keep your birds pure-bred, find out what is and is not common in your area, and locate as many sources of gamebird feed as you can.

    I was doing OK with my turkeys until gamebird starter went up three dollars a bag. Even then I might have been able to continue making a go of it, but the wife wanted me to reduce the size of the operation and we do better on table eggs and started pullets so the turkeys had to go.

    It's a matter of exploring your local market and how well you develop your advertising. Actually producing the birds is relatively easy.
  5. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

    Feb 20, 2008
    Opelousas, Louisiana


    So true.

    In my area, there are not too many people that have Bourbon Reds and for those that do, mine are far most the better looking and better breed merely by their diet and the way that I care for them. And this information comes from reviews from current customers and new customers. A guy stopped by a month or so ago and wanted to buy a Tom. When he picked it up, he could not believe how much my Tom weighed and this Tom was only a year old. He bought that Tom with a quickness. Another guy waited 5 months and came back to buy a hen and paid $75.00. He said that another guy showed him the hens that he had for sale but they look scrawny and he could tell that those hens were not getting the feed that they should have because he had already seen my girls before and that is what he compared those other hens to.

    So as A.T. said, the easy part is producing them.
  6. msmeower

    msmeower Songster

    Feb 25, 2012
    Flat Creek, TN
    I love my turkeys, and I make money from them, but so far I do not make a profit. They are eating machines! Easy to hatch, more hardy than chickens in my opinion but by the time they're 6 months old, I bet I've got $50 worth of feed, dewormer and housing in each bird and around here I can't sell a 6 month old bird of any color for $50. I sell them for $10 up to 4 weeks old, then $12, $15 and $25 at 6 months. People here think $25 is too much. We have Royal Palms, Sweetgrass, Bourbon Red, Blue Slate, Black Spanish, Chocolate and Bronze...hundreds of popults hatched this year. I am hoping I can sell them all during the holiday season and at least recoup my investment this year! We are re-thinking our turkeys for next year.
  7. sandspoultry

    sandspoultry Everybody loves a Turkey

    Feb 10, 2008
    Eastern NC
    We have been downsizing our flocks over the years, we used to have 6 color varieties and are now down to just two. Feed prices are a killer when you have alot of birds, we were going thru about 5000 pounds a month before we started downsizing 2 years ago. We were able to make a small profit from them as long as you didn't figure your labor into the mix. If you add in the care / feeding / shipping materials / time spent wrapping eggs and shipping / or taking them to auctions or sales and feeding the breeders in the "off months" that really eats into the profits. We have noted the local sales are dropping each year in our area, this year was our lowest in sales ever but when you go to TSC or Southern States and a 50 pound bag of feed is close to $20 it's easy to see why people aren't buying. If I had to pay those feed prices I couldn't make it, as it stands now I am driving almost an hour one way to a feed mill for a custom feed mix at between $10 -$11 per 50 pounds depending on the corn prices.
  8. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

    Feb 20, 2008
    Opelousas, Louisiana

    You are so right about the feed bills. That's why I try to sell all eggs that I can, all poults that I can and all toms that I can. I only have on hand what I want for next year's breeding. It doesn't pay to keep all of those turkeys around just to have them eat feed all day and run around.

    I travel about the same distance to a mill similar to the one you go to. They make their own high protein feed and it's $14.99 a 50lb bag.
  9. Lagerdogger

    Lagerdogger Songster

    Jun 30, 2010
    Aitkin, MN
    I can make enough on eggs and poults to cover winter feed costs, and I can sell heritage birds for meat and almost break even if I don't include labor. Last year, it cost me $5.40/lb to raise heritage turkeys, and I can only get $4.50/lb in rural Minnesota. I can make a small profit on the broad-breasteds, so I raise a few fatties to subsidize the cool birds.
  10. Macs farm

    Macs farm In the Brooder

    Doesn't sound very profitable. I am into turkeys just to feed my own family healthy meat and to trade for other things, food or services etc. They do smash their food. Like you all said, they'd eat $50 worth of food before they hit the table. I'm an electrician by trade and I give a turkey to my biggest or nicest clients, the value in that is far more than what you can sell a bird for.

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