Chicken Hatchery

How To Start a Chicken Hatchery Business in 8 Steps

A small-scale chicken hatchery is a lucrative business to start. However, the business demands sufficient knowledge and skill. The object of crafting this article is to provide all the information needed to start a successful chicken hatchery business.

Chicken meat is one of the most popular animal proteins globally. Additionally, it is the fastest-growing component of global meat production. Poultry production in the country has shown a steady increase in the last two decades.

India is the third-largest egg producer after China and USA. And the fourth-largest chicken producer after China, Brazil, and the USA. Furthermore, there are ample scopes for enhancing production. Production is getting more organized and moving ahead of consumption resulting in optimum prices and minimum profits. Compared with the rest of the livestock sector, the poultry industry in India is better organized and is progressing towards modernization.

Here are the 8 Steps to Start a Chicken Hatchery Business

1. Understand the Market Potential of Chicken Hatchery Business

Poultry is today the major source of meat in India. Its share in total meat consumption is 28%, as against 14% ten years ago. However, major growth drivers are high mutton prices, religious restrictions on beef and pork, and the limited availability of fish outside coastal regions.

Additionally, the growth of the poultry sector depends partly on the size of the poultry population and partly on productivity. So there is always a demand for the day one chicks for layers and broilers. Additionally, the poultry farmers always look for quality birds.

Suggested Read: How To Start A Small Scale Poultry Feed Manufacturing Business

Once you establish a reputation, they become your regular customers. Thus we can say a small-scale chicken hatchery unit has enough market opportunity and profit potential.

2. Get Trained

The chicken hatchery business demands a specific skill. If you do not have any previous experience try to attend training classes. You can contact your nearby Govt. offices of the Animal Husbandry Department. Generally, they conduct training from time to time.

3. Create a Chicken Hatchery Business Project Plan

It is essential to develop a business project plan for your egg hatchery business. This plan document works as a roadmap for the current and future course of company activities. Some of the key aspects the project plan document must address are the following:

  • Costs and Investments
  • Unique Selling Propositions of your chicken hatchery
  • Sourcing plan
  • Pricing plan
  • Manpower plan
  • Operational plan
  • Financials
  • How do you plan to sell your chicks to customers?

It is advised to hire a competent business plan writer for documentation. If you are looking for funds from investors, this project plan is going to be the single most important document.

4. Cost of Starting a Chicken Hatchery

The major cost for installing a chicken hatchery production unit is the incubator. The cost of an egg incubator ranges from Rs. 50000 to Rs. 200000 depending upon the number of eggs to be hatched. An overall investment of Rs. 5 lacs to Rs. 10 lacs will be needed to start a small-scale chicken hatchery business excluding space costs.

5. Make your Egg Hatchery Business Legally Compliant

The first step is to register your hatchery business. Depending on the size and scale of the unit, select the most appropriate business structure under which you are going to run the business. It can be a sole proprietorship, partnership, or a private limited company.

Furthermore, talk to a lawyer or a competent local authority and procure the required licenses need to operate a chicken hatchery unit at the desired location. Do not forget to apply for GST registration number as it is mandatory for running a business in the country.

6. Chicken Hatchery Setup & Machinery

Establishing a chicken hatchery demands a sufficient area for the operation. You will need to provide the housing for the one-day chicks. In addition, you must provide the space for incubator operation, vaccinations, etc. Ensure an adequate supply of water and electricity. An area of 2000 Sq Ft is perfect for a small-scale hatchery operation. Major machinery list includes

  • Egg Hatcher (Automatic)
  • Egg setter
  • Electric egg tester
  • Electric Debeaking
  • Egg weighing scale (1-100 gram cap.)
  • Feeder, waterer, and brooder
  • Misc. items like buckets, trays, baskets, etc.
  • Weighing balance
  • Generator
  • Air conditioner
  • Veterinary clinic instruments/equipment
  • Refrigerator

Related: Top Aquaculture Business Ideas

7. Chicken Hatchery – Manufacturing Process

Generally, you can start in two ways. Either with eggs or with one-day chicks. You will get the best result from the second option obviously.

First of all, you will need to procure one-day-old parent stock chicks of improved species of broiler and layer. You must procure from reliable suppliers. Then transfer the chicks to poultry sheds. You have to provide balanced nutrition to these birds depending upon their age and variety up to the laying stage. After they lay eggs collect them and transfer them to the hatchery section.

However, you must clean the eggs thoroughly to get rid of foreign matters. Then check the eggs for their suitability for hatching. You must segregate the eggs having cracked shells and unfertile eggs.

Then store the eggs in an air-conditioned room in order to bring them down from normal to a suitable temperature. Then transfer the conditioned eggs to setter incubators and incubate for 18 days. You must maintain a temperature of 99.9ºF and relative humidity of 82% in the setter incubators.

At the end of the 18th day, you have to transfer the eggs to holder incubators. There maintain a temperature of 98.9ºF and relative humidity of 87% and incubate for 3 days.

At the end of 21 days, chicks come out after breaking eggshells. You must remove the eggshell and membranes. Then you will need to check each chick for its sex and separate it out. Now you must provide medicines and vaccines to each and every chick. Thus your chicks are then ready for sale.

8. Quality Specification For Chicken Hatchery

You must produce the day-one chicks according to the customer specifications. However, the Bureau of Indian Standards has laid down specifications for day-old chicks (layer/broiler) under the following ISI
Specification: IS: 9800:1981: Basic requirements for day-old chicks (layer/broiler)

A revenue-wise chicken hatchery is a very profitable business. And has good potential for expansion also. However, proper management and consistent caring play an important role in getting long-term success in the chicken hatchery business.