The foundation of any business plan is to establish the production assumptions, and this equally applies to ostrich farming, setting up a business based on processing slaughter ostriches or establishing a marketing business based on sourcing a reliable supply of ostrich products.
Here is an overview of the various stages of production and the assumptions that need to be made.
Assumptions required for the production of ostrich eggs
- Total Number Laid: The total of eggs laid each year
- Months Eggs Laid: This is determined by the length of the laying season
- Total Number Set: The total number of eggs that are set each year, this allows for any eggs that maybe damaged.
- Percentage Fertile: The total number of eggs set that are fertile
- Percentage Hatched: The total number of fertile eggs that are hatched.
This will give the ability to estimate such things as:
- The incubation and hatching facilities required
- The total number of day old chicks produced each week
- The space required for chick rearing
Assumptions required for Chick production
- Percentage mortality: The number of chicks that die prior to slaughter
- Age of mortality: When chicks die as they consume food and require space while alive that must be accounted when budgeting as there is a cost implication.
- Rate of Growth: The better chicks grow the sooner they are ready for slaughter requiring no more food, space or labour.
- Age of slaughter: The sooner sold the faster revenue received.
- Where slaughtered: Establishes costs of slaughter
- Market: Will the slaughter plant buy the birds or will the business be responsible for selling end products
- Contract and prices: Contract terms
- Live weight, Carcass weight, ostrich meat Yields, breakdown of ostrich meat types and prices appropriate to method of sale
- ostrich skins, their sizes and prices
- Ostrich Feathers, their yields and prices
Costs (not required if selling birds to finishing unit or to slaughter plant)
- Slaughter costs
- Processing and packaging costs
- How distributed and costs
- Source and price of foundation stock – eggs, chicks or breeders
- Future Breeders – breed own replacements or purchase from genetic specialists
- Feed Requirements: As feed is as much as 70% of the production costs on farm, it is essential to know the number of birds on farm of different ages to assess the feed required as well as costs. If growing own ingredients, the bird flow is required to establish the tonnages required to be grown and acreages required to support those tonnages.
The implementation plan will lay out the structures and practices incorporated in the ostrich farming plan to optimise the production and minimise risks that result in poor egg production, poor hatching, high chick mortality and failure to make weight in given time.