Economics of smallholder chicken egg production among KAFACI project farmers in Southwest Nigeria
Deficiency in managerial capabilities, shortage of investible capital and high feed cost are major constraints limiting the growth and profitability of smallholder chicken production in Southwest Nigeria. Consequently, empowerment programmes was initiated to train and empower farmers in chicken egg production. Sustainability of the effort depends on the ability of the farmers to generate enough returns for reinvestment into the enterprise. This study evaluates the profitability of chicken egg production under the Korea-Africa Food and Agriculture Cooperation Initiative (KAFACI) project. Weekly data were collected during 2017 and 2018 production cycle on input quantity and cost, and quantity and prices of eggs produced. Analysis was by farm budget analysis. The results showed a decline in mortality rate in farms from 42.74% in 2017 to 7.76% in 2018. Similarly, average egg production per farm increased from 3,977 eggs in 2017 to 18,254 eggs in 2018. Average total income per farm also increased from N225,599.58 in 2017 to N638,758.25 in 2018, whereas gross margin increased from a net loss of N157,097.73 in 2017 to a net benefit of N281,025.93. Loss of revenue in 2017 was attributed to high mortality among laying birds. Cost of feed accounted for 59.34% of the average variable cost of producing table eggs. The study therefore recommended capacity building for farmers on farm-level formulation of costeffective feeding, as well as improving access of farmers to quality feed at subsidized cost, as an interim measure.
Keywords: Chicken egg production, smallholder farmer, profitability, KAFACI project.