Many small farms already have chickens or produce their own eggs. And with good reason! It’s fairly easy and nothing beats the taste of fresh chicken or eggs laid on your own farm. You can start off by buying day-old chicks. But if you’re primarily getting chickens for egg laying, you should buy young hens that are about 18 weeks old and ready to start laying eggs. This takes a lot of risk out of raising chicks yourself. Hens should be kept for one year before slaughtered or sold as cull hens. After a year, the egg production of hens starts to slow down and eventually they will stop laying altogether. You can sell cull hens for about the same price as buying a new replacement pullet, with all the eggs you have produced over the year being your profit. Grass-fed chickens produce better tasting meat and eggs than chickens that are factory farmed on a large scale. You won’t need to give your chickens antibiotics on your small scale farm, but they should still be fully vaccinated against poultry diseases. You can sell your eggs and broiler chickens at a farmer’s market, to restaurants or direct to consumers. Having a few cartons of eggs for sale next to your vegetables at the market is a great way to diversify your products and attract more customers.
Sell hatching eggs
You can charge a higher price for hatching eggs. Particularly if you have got a rare or in-demand breed. You can sell chicks or pullets (young hens under a year old) for even more money. Although it is more work and costs more to raise them. Other than hens, ducks, turkey, quails and even guinea fowls are in big demand in Uganda.
Raise heritage poultry
Chicken is usually the first thing that comes to mind when you hear poultry. But there are others that you can raise too. Eating ducks, geese, and guinea fowl fell out of favour for a long time. Now demand for these birds is on the rise again. People want to eat both their meat and eggs. Keep in mind that you’ll need some water on your property if you want to keep ducks or geese.
Collect and sell processed egg shells
Eggshells can be reused in many ways that don’t readily come to mind. Eggshells are almost entirely calcium carbonate, which is one of the most essential nutrients for thriving plants. As they break down, the eggshells enrich the soil with calcium and nitrogen, which the plant’s roots will absorb and put to use as it grows.
Check out these innovative ideas for your home, garden, and more!
- Use eggshells as a calcium- and mineral-rich additive to wild bird feed and chicken feed.
- Add them to ground coffee before brewing. The shells help reduce any bitterness. Wash the shells thoroughly to remove any egg residue, dry, then crush and add to your ground coffee.
- As a soil additive for houseplants, they add minerals and help keep soil loose and aerated.
- Love camping? Use those shells with soapy water as a natural abrasive for pots and pans, especially when cleaning products and really hot water are at a premium.
- Bake clean eggshells at 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Let cool and grind to a fine powder. Add as a calcium supplement (a teaspoonful does it) to juice, smoothies, etc.
- Add to your garden to keep cats away that may be using it as a litter box. Cats will not like the sharpness under their tender paws. Their smell can also reportedly deter deer and repel slugs, snails, and cutworms without resorting to toxic chemicals. Maybe tantamount to that, mineral-charged eggshells can be crushed and scattered into each hole before planting. Sprinkle additional crushed shells around your plants every couple of weeks.
- Use egg shells to raise seedlings.
- Skin irritations? Drop an eggshell into some apple cider vinegar for a couple of days. Apply to skin irritations or itches.
- Unclog drains: Placed in your sink strainer, they can trap errant solids. When they ultimately break down, they will serve to clean pipes on their way out.
- Arthritis is a disorder characterized by chronic inflammation in one or more joints. It usually results in pain and is often disabling. Eggshell powder mixed with Vinegar has been reported to alleviate joint pain associated with osteoarthritis of the knee