Are you interested in starting a pig farm in SA but have little or no idea on where to start from? You are at the right place.
This is a comprehensive guide on how to start a successful pig farm wherever you are in South Africa.
Pig farming is a business that can change your live. The demand for pork meat is always there so entering into piggery is always a good choice.
This farm promises high returns provided everything is done the right way.
Using our farm as a case study, I am going to show you exactly how I started a commercial pig farming and made huge profits even as at now. Are you ready?
Let’s get started.
Why should you start rearing pigs?
You should ponder over this question even before you thing of piggery. In answering this question, it is required of the farmer to do pre-market analysis to see how well the business will do.
Unlike poultry farming, there are few piggeries and so venturing into it is a good idea. Reason why I think you should start a pig farm include but not limited to the following.
- It promises high profits
- The demand for pork is ready
- Pigs multiply very fast. One sow (mature female) can give birth up to 16 piglets at a time.
- Pigs can feed on a wide range of food making it easier for the farmer.
Write a business plan
This step gets skipped by most young farmers because they think it is of less relevance. However, a well-detailed business plan will guide you to success in your farm.
Write a business plan for pig farming that has the following topics captured.
- The breed of pigs you want to rear
- The proposed location of the farm
- Capital needed to start
- SWOT analysis
- Market research and competition
- And many more
If you need more help on writing a pig farming business plan, leave your contact in the comment section below.
How much do I need to start a successful commercial piggery in South Africa? To be honest, I can’t quote an exact amount. The capital required is dependent on how big or small you want start. Start with few piglets (minimum capital) and grow overtime.
Choosing a location for the farm
When all the above are done, it is time to secure a land for the farm. It is always recommended to choose a place far from residential areas which has available labour. Also do consider cost of water, transportation, etc.
Constructing the structure for the pigs
The structure you intend to use for your pig farm in South Africa depends on the system in which you want to raise the pigs. See the different models of raising pigs listed below.
- Intensive system
- Semi-intensive system
- Extensive system
The pigs are confined and not allowed to move out. They are raised inside sties (a place where pigs are kept) either on concrete or sawdust.
There is much cost involved in using this system as the farmer is required to build sties for the pigs. It is however the most secured and sanitized system to rear pigs.
In this mode, housing is provided for the pigs but are allowed to move out to feed on natural vegetation. Note that the housing is fenced to prevent the animals from getting lost. The farmer provides wallot pits fort he pigs to cool themselves.
Less capital is required rearing in this system.
Animals are allowed to roam and find food for themselves. Little capital is required to start this system.
Stocking the pen with piglets
Starting with the right breed is an important step to success as a pig farmer. You can source for breeding stock from a local farmer near you.
Things to note
- Start with few gilts (a gilt is a female pig under 1 year)
- Don’t buy the boar (uncastrated male pig) from the same farm you bought the gilt. This prevents in breeding.
- Check the number of teats (nipple of a female pig). A gilt should have a minimum of 12 developed teats before selected for breeding.
Feeding the pigs
Pigs feed on a variety of foods. You can prepare your own meal from a mixture of corn meal, wheat bran and fish meal or from left over foods.
Proper hygiene is a must in every pig farming business. Give pigs clean water and ensure they are immunized against swine flu periodically and on time.