Goat Farming Business in Nigeria
Farming in Nigeria has become an area of interest and recently has begun to attract large number of investors. However, there is a preconceived mindset popular among Nigerians that limit farming to crops farming and sale. Animal farming, which is another part of agriculture is one that has long been in existence in Nigeria and is fast spreading and gaining huge momentum. Animal farming is also called animal husbandry and it involves raising animals for their milk, meat, egg, fibre and other products. Some popular animal farming includes; chicken farming, turkey farming, quail farming, cattle farming, goat farming, etc. This article however will focus on starting up a goat farming business in Nigeria.
Goat farming is not synonymous to Nigeria alone. In fact, the countries with the highest number of goat exports are New Zealand, followed by Australia and United Kingdom. Though goat meat export measure has continued to soar high, yet the demand for this product has not been matched by supply. Coming down to Nigeria, goat farming gives a different picture. Goat farming is mostly predominant in the northern part of the country and most goats in the country are consumed internally with almost little or nothing left for export. In fact, the Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh has decried Nigeria’s situation, how that Nigerians are not consuming enough protein. This is to say that despite the amount of animals farmed, it is not enough to meet consumption of Nigerians. This therefore serves as an eye opener about the high demand for goat meat, and as the saying goes, the higher the demand for a product, the more lucrative it is venturing into investment that deals with the product.
Why Venture Into Goat Farming
Goat farming is the commercial rearing of goats on a stretch of land for its milk, meat, hair and skin products. In Nigeria, goat is mainly farmed for its meat. Use of goat milk is not very popular in Nigeria, but one that will be a very promising investment if ventured into. Now, let us take a look at some of the benefits of goat meat and milk, compared to other animals meat and milk.
Also Recommended: Feasibility Study on Goat Farming
- Goat meat has less fat compared to chicken.
- It has a high amount of protein and iron than found in beef.
- Goat meat is lean meat because of its low cholesterol, total and saturated fat and low calories compared to beef, therefore is regarded as healthier meat compared to chicken beef and pork when served in equal sizes.
- And of course, it has its own great and unique taste.
- Goat milk can be consumed, though this is very rare in Nigeria, and therefore this line has not been ventured into. However, in other countries, goat milk is popular and can even be found on the shelves of supermarkets.
- The milk of goat can be used for production of butter, cheese and yoghurt which are consumed in Nigeria, but sometimes imported from other countries, especially cheese. This line can also be invested in.
- Goat milk is a good source of protein.
- It contains less lactose. People who are lactose intolerant could get away with milk consumption by using goat milk as an alternative.
- It has more calcium, potassium, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin A, than regular cow milk.
- Goat milk is easily and naturally homogenized without use of artificial process. Homogenized means to make uniform in consistency. This is not so for cow milk, which undergoes an artificial process to give it a uniform consistency, otherwise, if left without this process, will become undesirable for consumption as the fat will gather together and float to the top when left to sit for some time.
- It has less amount allergen causing proteins than those found in cow milk.
- It is easier to digest.
We have looked at some of the benefits of goat meat and milk. Now we look at the overall benefit of engaging in goat farming.
- It requires less labour compared to chicken farming.
- Goat has a readily available market.
- The required start-up capital can be moderate.
- Good source of manure which can be used by yourself if you are into crops farming or sold to those that are into crop farming.
- Goat rearing can be practised in most weather conditions, which makes the business flourish in Nigeria.
- Goat is a good protein source and a significant source of food.
- All breeds of goat can be raised in same environment and can be placed on same diet as cattle.
- Goat can serve as an important export source.
- Depending on the scale of goat farming you embark on, you can become an employer of labour.
Breeds of Goat in Nigeria
There are various types of goat breeds. The breed you decide to purchase will depend on whether its main purpose is for milk or meat. It is therefore advisable that proper research is done to get the most out of the breed you are investing in. Below are some popular goat breeds.
- Nigerian dwarf goats.
- Nubian goats.
- Lamancha goats.
- Boer goats.
- Alpine goats.
- Oberhasli goats.
You can also go for hybrid goats after you have done proper research about it. Now that we have looked at the general aspect about goat farming and goat meat, let us now consider what is needed to set up a goat farm.
- Conduct your feasibility studies: Feasibility studies is very important in the sense that it helps you know if your business will work using the available resources or if you need to hold on and gather more resources. For instance, if you are thinking of starting with 50 goats and you have just 2 plots of land, a feasibility studies will let you know if that amount of goat can be farmed on that space of land. A feasibility studies will also guide you on legal, economic and technical requirements needed to run your farm as it brings all these factors into consideration. So, endeavour to conduct your feasibility studies to guide you an idea if the business will work.
- Business plan: Next thing you need to do is draft your business plan. Business plan helps you set your business goals and develop the steps you need to meet those goals. It helps you get prepared to mitigate risks in your business, and most importantly, if you are looking to get financial support or assistance in the form of loan or business incentive, a well drafted business plan will get you more than half way through the process. Also, a business plan will help you analyse your business goals, as the business progresses, if the business is progressing the way it should or not, based on your aims and objectives. It is therefore pertinent to get your business plan ready.
To get your goat farming business plan in Nigeria today, pay N10, 000 to:
BANK NAME: FIRST BANK PLC
ACCOUNT NAME: CHIBUZOR TOCHI ONYEMENAM
ACCOUNT NUMBER: 3066880122
After payment, text your full name, email address and title (goat farming business plan sample) to 07033378184. Your business plan will be sent to your email within 15 minutes.
- Acquire your grazing land: This is a very important factor. How much land you acquire will depend on how much goats you will be rearing. Goats require good pasture to feed on, therefore the greener the pasture, the more healthy grass the goats will have to eat. From research, an acre of land can take up a maximum of 20 goats. Is this space not too much? I’d say NO! Goats move around and they need enough grass to feed on and they like to keep some space from each other. Spread of diseases can be minimised when there is enough space for the goats. This amount of land will do just fine. So if you are thinking of rearing 500 goats, you will need at least, 25 acres. Also, you will need to make a house for the goats on this land. This will be discussed later on. When getting a grazing land, some points need to be considered.
- Proximity to town.
- Closeness to market where needs of the goats and farm tools can be purchased.
- A good network of road that will allow easy vehicle access for transporting the goats.
- Closeness to a veterinary service provider.
- This grazing land should have access to clean and fresh water.
***Please note, you can keep 10 goats per acre of land. This is the practice in various places around the world. However, that will require a vast amount land.
- Secure the grazing land: Securing the grazing land keeps predators like wolves, foxes, coyotes and the likes from preying on your goats. It also helps to keep the goats within the perimeter. Some would build a perimeter fence to secure the grazing land, but this is not 100% effective, as your goats can scale over the fence and wander off or worst still predators get in to prey on your goats. Barbwire can be used to fence the perimeter of your grazing land. This serves to better protect the goats from predators or wandering off. Sometimes electric fencing may be used to prevent the goats from making attempts to scale the wired perimeter. Goats are intelligent animals and so will quickly learn from the shocking experience of other goats and stay away from the wires. Some people keep guard dogs that ward off or warn in cases of predators in the perimeter. Goats like to climb. So making a play ground for them by providing structures they can climb can serve as distractions to prevent them from going over the perimeter.
- Build a barn for the goats: Whether you call it a goat pen or house or barn, it simply is making a shelter for the goats during unfavourable weather conditions, which could be cold, rain or very hot weather. Goats also need a place to sleep at night, of course they graze only during the day time. They also take breaks and rest during the day, so a nice comfortable house for the goats will do just fine. There should be enough room for each goat, as they do not like overcrowding. They like to chew on their cord while resting, so dropping some grasses for them in the house will do fine. The house should be dry always. A damp environment allows bacteria to thrive and cause result to contamination and illness. The house should be cleaned from time to time and fumigated to prevent bugs and disease carrying insects from surviving and multiplying. The barns should be built with enough protection to prevent predators and thieves. Dogs can also be kept outside the barns to ward of unwelcomed guests.
- Purchase your desired goat breed: What breed of goat you will be rearing will depend on the product you are intending to sell. Once you have decided, then you can go ahead and purchase your choice breed. Also, your purchase may be controlled by the breed available for sale and the breed that is sold in the market in cases of rearing for meat production. Always purchase healthy kids ( the name for baby goats ), and ensure they are de-wormed and vaccinated before they begin to graze. They should be free from diseases as well.
- Veterinary services: You need to keep treatment and vaccination of the goats up to date. You can employ the services of a professional or you can carry them out yourself if you have received standard education on these processes and are duly qualified to do them. Also adequate knowledge is required to offer first aid treatments in cases of emergency before the veterinarian arrives. Be very observant of the animals so that you can immediately call for your veterinary officer once you notice anything abnormal or unusual. The healthier your herd of goats, the longer they will live.
How Much Profit can one Make from Goat
A mature male goat weighs from 41kg – 159kg, while the female weighs from 30kg – 114kg depending on the breed. The means on the average, a mature male goat weighs 100kg and a mature female goat weighs 72kg. Now let’s do some quick calculations below.
A kilogram of goat sells for #541.50. A male goat of average weight 100kg will therefore sell for
#541.50 * 100kg = #54,150. If you sell 100 of mature male goats in a year, going by the average weight given here, you would make
#54,150 * 100 = #5, 415, 000.
For the female goats,
#541.50 * 72kg = #38, 988. If you sell 100 of these in a year, you get
#38,988 * 100 = #3, 898, 800.
Adding both figures together gives;
#5, 45, 000 + #3, 898, 800 = #9, 313, 800.
Let us assume you spent 2.5 million for production and maintenance, you still have over 5 million naira profit to take home. There are very few businesses that gives that kind of huge profit.
The calculation above is for the purpose of illustration. Depending on where you are, the price per kg of goat meat can vary. Also, how well you manage and feed your goats, as well as their breed will determine what weight they get to when they mature.
*** Please note that it takes 2 to 3 years for goats to mature enough to be sold, so your profit will not start to come immediately. Also, if you had to purchase Land for farming and carryout the whole set up from the start, then the money realised from first sales may be just to recover your investment capital and subsequent sales will begin to fetch you profit.
FACTS AND TIPS FOR GOAT AND GOAT FARMING BUSINESS IN NIGERIA
- A female goat is called a doe or nanny.
- A male goat is called a buck or billy.
- A castrated male goat is called wether.
- Baby goats are called kids.
- Both male and female goats can have beards.
- A goat can give birth to single kid or twins, but rarely does it give birth to triplets.
- Goats are usually inquisitive and will chew on anything to know if it is edible, however they do not chew garbage, tin can or clothing. They can become selective when exposed to well-balanced diet.
- The buck goes through what is called ‘’rut’’ when they are reading to mate with the doe. This period usually coincides with the breeding season.
- A buck in rut is characterised by decrease in appetite, aggressiveness to other bucks and sometimes its handlers, obsessive interest in does and the most notable of all is the strong smelly foul odour at this time.
- The duration of gestation (pregnancy) for does is 146-155 days.
- Estrus (heat) is the period that the does allow mating with bucks and it lasts for about 12-36 hours. This period is characterised by tail wagging, mucous discharge, bleating, swelling of the vulva and allowing mounting by the buck.
- The estrous cycle has a duration of 18-22days.
- Coffee was discovered by a set of goat herd farmers when they noticed an increase in goat activity after the goats nibbled on coffee beans.
- The larger the circumference of the scrotum of a buck, the higher its libido and fertility.
- The Boer breed of goats leads in goat meat production.
- Some goats whether buck or doe are naturally infertile and cannot be used for breeding nor milk production.
- Healthy kids can stand within minutes after delivery and can move with the rest of the herd almost immediately.
- Goats will eat more when they have good pasture than when the pasture is poor. In cases where the land has poor pastures, hydroponic fodders can be used to provide pasture for goats. This is a reigning agricultural practice that saves time and is economical. Cereals and other goat feed can be fermented to maximize the absorption of nutrients.
- Goats do not like eating contaminated or soiled feed.
- Vomiting in goats is almost always due to consumption of poisonous plants.
- Goats may be paralysed after being administered injection. You must therefore employ qualified hands to vaccinate and treat your goats.
- A group of goat is called a herd.
- The age of puberty for male goat is 4-8 months and 7-10 months for females.
- The breeding age of male goats is 8-10 months.
- Goats are vulnerable to attack of parasites and other infections if poorly managed.
- Goat has a natural life expectancy of 8-12 years, and in some cases over 15 years.
- If your goat farm is in an area that might have snakes attack your goats then you should keep the surrounding grass free as much as possible and fumigate from time to time. Special dog breeds can also ward off snakes.
Certain Symptoms to look out fro
There are certain symptoms the goats display that could be a sign of disease or sickness. If you notice them, be sure to contact your veterinary officer right away.
- Lack of appetite.
- Muscle weakness.
- Green or cloudy nasal discharges.
- Diarrhea-like stool.
- Rapid or slow breathing.
- An unusually bloated stomach.
Though there is a readily available market for goat meat, however, you need to locate hot spots where these products are highly demanded. Also, you can win customers over by offering incentives and other benefits to boost your customer base while you grow your business. I hope this article has answered some of your questions about goat farming and will give you the boost you need to take the first steps in starting up this business.
Get your own sample goat farming business plan in Nigeria now! To place order, Pay N10,000 to:
BANK NAME: GUARANTY TRUST BANK (GTB)
ACCOUNT NAME: CHIBUZOR TOCHI ONYEMENAM
ACCOUNT NUMBER: 0044056891
BANK NAME: FIRST BANK PLC
ACCOUNT NAME: CHIBUZOR TOCHI ONYEMENAM
ACCOUNT NUMBER: 3066880122
After payment, send your full name, email address and topic (i.e. goat farming business plan sample) to 07033378184. Your business plan will be sent to your email within 15 minutes.
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