Starting a rabbit farming business can be very lucrative, especially for business-minded people who have a passion for working with animals. If you are such an animal enthusiast, raising rabbit for commercial usage will be an excellent opportunity to turn what you love, into a real business venture. Moreover, it will provide you a stable income. There is a large demand for rabbit meat due to the fact that medical professionals recommend this meat over red meat as it is highly nutritious due to its high protein content but lesser amount of cholesterol and fat. Rabbits are also non-violent animals, which makes working with them much easier.
Before engaging in to this venture, I am going to describe you the potentials and possibility of raising rabbits from commercial standpoint.
Benefits of Raising Rabbits for Profit
- Rabbits are more fertile in nature. One female rabbit can bring forth an average of 8 kits each time.
- It grows faster than the other animals and the meat productivity rate is also better.
- Rabbit farming requires short space as well as modest start-up capital. You will get back 45% of your investment after on year of starting operation.
- Rabbits are household animal and non-violent in nature, requiring minimal labor for care and supervision.
- Rabbit meat is in-demand food product and its popularity is increasing worldwide as it is delicious and enriched with high level of protein, vitamin, calcium etc.
- Due to their low mortality rate, rabbit farming is highly lucrative business.
If you are thinking about raising rabbit for profit, then you need to do thoughtful planning and preparation. Take a look at the several essential steps in order to start this business from your backyard.
The Business Plan
As with any other type of business, it is important to start out with a business plan. This will help you get a clear picture of the requirements and the steps needed to officially start your business. You should include some vital points in your business plan in order to make the process run smoother and get your operation started faster. Some vital elements that should be included in your business plan include:
- Rabbit breed that you want to specialize in. You may know that a variety of rabbit breeds are available all over the world but a limited number of breeds are raised commercially. You might choose to specialize in the white breed or rex breed depending on the purpose of production and obviously the ease of use of that breed in your area.
- Farming method that will be used. For example, you can choose to use the deep litter method or the cage breeding method to breed your rabbits. In deep litter method, a few rabbits are kept on covered area. Concrete floor with a thick layer of litter husk, hay or wood shavings are provided but there is a possibility of outbreak of diseases among the rabbits. Cage system is ideal for raising a large number of rabbits for business purpose. They are kept in metal hutches that are well ventilated and provided with necessary facilities such as watering system, feed hopper, and nest box etc.
Other important elements such as a financial forecast, business structure, equipment requirements and startup costs should also be discussed within the business plan.
The next step is to do some initial preparation in order to get ready to start operating. You should start by educating yourself on rabbits, their breeding patterns and common diseases, and how to properly feed them for optimal health. Once you have the adequate information in mind, you should purchase some essential equipment and tools that are required to successfully operate a rabbit farming business, such as:
- Breeding cages
Daily feed consumption rate greatly differs among the various breeds. An adult rabbit daily requires about 2700 kcal of energy from their dietary list which includes green grass, herbs, leaves, vegetables like spinach, radish, carrots, cucumber, potato etc. For your rabbit farm, you can provide them poultry feed also. It is very important to make available clean and fresh drinking water in the hutches.
You will also need to decide on a location where you will be breeding the rabbits. If you are starting out small, you could set out a part of your backyard to start with. If you are starting out bigger, then you should look into leasing a commercial property where you can breed the rabbits.
The other important step is to comply with the local rules and regulations regarding with rabbit farming. You should visit the local office and complete all the legal formalities.
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Starting Your Business
Once you have made the proper preparations and completed your planning phase, it is time to get started. This type of business is relatively easy to get started with and only require a couple of steps before you are ready to start operating.
Now that you are ready to start your business, the first step is to purchase rabbits. You should find a farm that can provide you with about two male rabbits and six female rabbits. This is a great number to start with. Rabbits breed quite quickly, so you can expect to grow in a short amount of time. Place the rabbits in the location you want to breed them in and you can start operating.
Rabbits usually start breeding between the age of four to five months and a pregnant rabbit gives birth to around six to 10 babies at a time. It takes 31 days for a rabbit to give birth. The buck and doe should also be added to the same location in order for breeding to take place. One female rabbit is able to give birth to approximately 50 babies per year.
Promoting Your Rabbit Farming Business
After you have start operating and your rabbits start breeding, it is time to promote your business and to find potential clients. You should start by preparing a document or brochure explaining the nutritional value of rabbit meat. Try to find some studies that compare red meat to rabbit meat and present the results of these studies in the brochure.
You should promote your rabbits to individuals and to businesses, such as hotels and restaurants. Provide every person or business you promote your business to with a brochure containing the nutritional facts about rabbit meat and include a pricing guide so they will know what to expect to pay when they buy rabbits from you.
Other promotional methods include newspaper ads, classified ads, and advertisements on local radio stations and even promotions on local television.
The rabbit farming business is in high demand and the startup costs are relatively low. The business is easy to maintain and does not require any special skills apart from knowing how to breed with rabbits. This makes a raising rabbit for profit a lucrative business opportunity for individuals looking to make money through working with animals.