In the face of the current recession and harsh economic conditions, Nigeria needs to diversify her economy by investing in other profitable yet untapped sectors other than the oil sector.
The agricultural sector for instance has the potentials of boosting the economy and bringing Nigeria out of recession but it’s a pity this sector is largely underutilized as Nigeria is still exporting large quantities of agricultural products for consumption.
Many people are ignorant of the fact that pig farming otherwise known as piggery is a very lucrative business, most Nigerian are oblivious to the way it works, some are blinded by cultural and religious beliefs that considers the consumption of pork as a taboo.
Studies have revealed that Nigeria produces more of beef and poultry products than pork, this means we are one of the smallest pig farming industries in the world today.
Read Also: How to Start Pig Farming in Nigeria
What is Pig Farming ?
Pig farming is a part of animal husbandry that involves the breeding and raising of pigs for domestic and commercial purposes.
There are different species of pigs that can be reared but the specie to be reared by the farmer will be wholly dependent on its availability and demand in his geographical location.
Below are some breeds of pigs;
- Black pig Poland china pig
- Berkshire pig Chester white pig
- Mulefoot pig Hereford pig
- Yorkshire pig Hamsphire pig
- Tamworth pig Large black pig
Cost of Starting Pig Faring in Nigeria
The cost of raising pigs is relatively low and affordable mainly because pigs have low mortality rates, strong immune system, the cost of their feeds is low and they reproduce in large numbers.
A female pig can birth ten to fifteen piglets at a time. Full time investment in piggery will yield a consistent form of income and employment, all the farmer needs to do rear the kind of breed that can be supplied both locally and internationally.
A farmer can also diversify his income for increased return on investments by supplying pig skin to leather industries to be used in manufacturing great leather products.
A fully matured pig in nigeria today sells for ten thousand naira and above, while a female pig sells for over twenty thousand naira, now multiply this by over twenty pigs given that there are more than one female pigs in the farm, you will be amazed at how much income is generated.
Pig farming also comes with its own challenges which may range from a shortage in supply of breed that is high in demand, high cost of pig feed, poor marketing network, sudden and unexpected outbreak of diseases, unproductive pig stock, low quality feeds from the supplier, high cost of electricity and water supply and much more, these challenges however are surmountable with the installation of adequate measures and availability of well trained or experienced labour.
How Profitable is Pig Farming in Nigeria
1. Manure: the faeces of pigs make very good manure, this means that the farmer can supply manure in large quantities to crop farmers to maintain soil fertility, if the farmer is into mixed farming, he will have no need to purchase manure as his piggery will provide manure to boost the production of his crops.
This is a plus either ways because the sale of manure brings in extra money or saves the farmer from additional expenses on manure.
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2. Low Cost Of Management: the management of piggery is very easy and can be easy to supervise in addition to the fact that the returns on sales is way higher than cost of maintaining your staff. This means that your profits are high and costs are very minimal.
3. Pigs Grow Fast And Are prolific Breeders: a major achievement in production of pigs is the improvement in the reproductive performances of the sow (female pig) pigs can now give birth two or three times a year, and they birth like ten to thirteen piglets at once.
It is not uncommon to wean thirty to thirty five piglets per sow a year; this can be done through genetic selection of hyper prolificacy as well as a good understanding of the biology of the pig.
Again, pigs are sold according to their weight, sometimes a kilogram goes for four hundred naira, the higher your pigs weigh, the costlier they are. The weight of the pig will be dependent on how you feed them.
Now, if you are able to raise about three hundred pigs a year, you are likely to get over six million from sales, hundred pigs will raise you thirty million naira and that is good money.
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4. Pig Skin : is used to manufacture beautiful leather products like shoes, boots, handbags, saddle, belts, seats, football and other apparels like shirts, jackets and blazers.
With the right marketing strategies a farmer can export his products as the demand arising, fetching himself extra profit and at the same time expanding his market. When your pigs are raised in high quality conditions, your profit will likely improve.
In the next few years, Nigeria will need to make farming more attractive, efficient and sustainable by creating incentives that will enable farmers produce more food for consumption for commercial purposes to kill hunger and safe guard the future.
How to Start Pig Farming in Nigeria
Pig farming remains a very lucrative livestock venture that farmers need to embrace as it gives satisfaction if executed rightly. Below is a summary on how to raise a pig farm
1. FIND A GOOD LOCATION
Find a large land mass in a non residential area where the stench from the pig farm will not constitute a nuisance, the land must be accessible and spacious enough for the pigs to roam in search of their own food.
2. BUILD PIG PENS
Build pens to protect pigs from harsh weather conditions and easy control and regulation of temperature to control spread of diseases and to avoid pig fights. Construct drainages and provide a pool of water because pigs love to play and splash in pools.
3. PURCHASE HEALTHY PIGLETS
Consult a good stock breeder to help you make the best choice in purchasing piglets, you also need the services of a veterinary doctor to confirm the health status of the piglets.
4. PIG FEEDS
If you must raise healthy pigs, you must feed them right with vitamins, rich supplements and heavy protein meals. There is a need for constant water supply because pigs drink a lot of water.
5. PERIODIC SANITATION
Clean the pens regularly and ensure the stay dry for a disease free environment.
6. EMPLOY STAFF
It is impossible to run a commercial piggery on your own, you need to employ extra and capable hands to assist in the day to day administration of your farm.
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