Meat chickens

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by GUSRENTIT, Dec 6, 2011.

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  1. GUSRENTIT

    GUSRENTIT Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 29, 2011
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    As a newbie, I hope this an acceptable question on this forum. Is there a large market for home grown, free range meat chickens? If so what is the average profit margin?
    Thanks,
    Gus
     
  2. krcote

    krcote Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There is a good market in our neck of the woods, not sure about yours. On a smaller scale (what you are likely to start with) there is not really a profit to be made. Often times you spend money. The birds are usually used to draw in customers and get them familiar with what you do and stand for. Then, you add in a more profitable product such as beef or organic veggies or turn them on to whatever else you can provide. There are very few folks out there selling meat birds out of their backyard operations turing a profit. That doesn't mean it's not worth doing! We did our first 50 this past summer to feed out family and couldn't be happier with the results.
     
  3. kfacres

    kfacres Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 14, 2011
    homegrown, local, farm raised....etc.. is a market that is going upward to no limit, especially if you are 'close' to a large city or the 'burbs....

    organic, is beating a dead horse... Most organic producers that I know, if not for the row crops-- would drop the certification and focus on the above...
     
  4. jessicayarno

    jessicayarno Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 6, 2011
    Pacific Northwest
    It's not highly profitable, but it can help cover the costs of raising them for your own family... If you live in a farming community it's going to be hard to make your costs back, but as someone else stated, if you live close to a big city, you can charge a little more..
     
  5. lprofancik

    lprofancik Out Of The Brooder

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    May 15, 2011
    I think there is a profit to be made depending on how many you want to raise. We plan to do 300 next year and should make about 2,000 and that's after taking a portion for ourselves and accounting for loss. If we up that number to 750 birds we would profit about 6,000. We have 10 acres and run them in electric poultry netting and chicken tractors. So far we've only used our yard area and not the pasture, but we plan to move them to the pasture next year because they do an amazing job fertilizing and improving soil.

    There is money to be made, but you have to play the numbers game to see what your break even point is and when you'll start making a profit. We crunched number for a while in Exel to make it work. [​IMG]

    Also, look for places you can buy feed in bulk from to save costs. We wanted to do organic feed, but decided to do just non-GMO as a compromise because the organic was so expensive here in our area.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2011
  6. jessicayarno

    jessicayarno Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I forgot to mention that I use a more expensive feed from a local feed mill, that is free of animal by products, pesticides, and medications and I do not process my own birds.. Using a cheaper feed and processing them yourself will make a big difference as far as cost vs. profit..
     
  7. GUSRENTIT

    GUSRENTIT Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 29, 2011
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    Jessi, thanks for the info, it kind of puts things in prospective. Would it weird to ask a "price range" that these chickens sell for in your area?
    Thanks, Gus
     
  8. jessicayarno

    jessicayarno Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The price range here is $3-$4lb.. I only charged $2 my last time and really jipped myself, you live and learn.. I kept precise records of costs and I paid $10.50 a bird (that's cost of the chick, feed, bedding, and processing).I started with 36 birds and ended up with 31 processed. I processed at 8wks 1 day and they averaged 4-5lbs dressed weight.. I am definitely raising my prices this next go round.. I am raising a slower grower this time, so have to see what the difference in feed costs will be..
     
  9. kfacres

    kfacres Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:What eats more? A bird that eats twice as much feed... or one that takes twice as long to butcher?
     
  10. jessicayarno

    jessicayarno Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:What eats more? A bird that eats twice as much feed... or one that takes twice as long to butcher?

    I am pretty sure a bird that takes 2-3 more weeks doesn't eat twice as much food, but I guess we will just have to see exactly how much these birds eat... I am not into raising birds that eat themselves to death... To each his own... I prefer to raise a bird that will forage and not just sit in front of the feeder..
     
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