Chickens offer the most affordable form of protein and as a result, it’s the most popular meat type consumed in South Africa. Chicken farming is also popular because of low barriers to entry and the quick return on investment especially if you’re growing broilers.

Backyard broiler growers don’t have all the resources to participate fully in the value chain of producing broilers. Their role is mainly on growing day old chicks because they don’t have the breeding stock to produce fertile eggs. They can’t produce fertile eggs because keeping broiler breeding stock is expensive.

The business opportunity

Backyard chicken farming is very popular in South Africa, which presents opportunities for the supply of day-old chicks. The country has a limited number of established hatcheries especially on broilers which command the ultimate demand. In festive seasons the demand is never met and as a result backyard broiler growers struggle to source quality broiler chicks.

Broiler day old chicks have a constant demand by backyard farmers since they don’t hatch themselves, but rely on third parties for supply.

Becoming a hatchery presents vast opportunities since customers already exist and currently served by external suppliers and not local hatcheries.

Egg Incubators

Weapons of trade – Surehatch

Surehatch Egg Incubators have established themselves to be a reputable manufacturer of egg incubators in South Africa. With origins from Cape Town, they now have a branch in Johannesburg and also distribute their incubators across the continent.

They produce incubators of different sizes and budgets from R6,250 (60 eggs capacity) to R107,500 (8,000 eggs capacity).

When hatching broiler chicks, you’ll need fertile broiler eggs which are supplied by National Chicks.

Incubator Supplier –
Fertile Eggs Supplier –

This means you’re still fully in control of the value chain since you rely on third parties for fertile eggs. If you have the financial muscle to produce fertile eggs in-house, the below are principal broiler breeders in South Africa:

Farming with broiler breeding stock is an expensive exercise if you intend producing fertile eggs in-house.

An affordable alternative is on producing pure chicken breeds which are also gaining popularity because of their taste and texture of the meat. There is a variety of dual breeds such as Black Australorp, Rhodes Island Red, Potch Koekoek which rank amongst the popular pure chickens.

CSP Poultry continues making a mark for themselves in producing pure breed chickens.

Revenue sources

When hatching day old chicks your income is on the selling of the chicks, below is an example cited by Surehatch on a 1,920 chicks incubator…

Hatching and Selling Broiler Chicks*

Ave. Cost to Produce Chick:   R4.00
Ave. Selling Price Per Chick:  R10.00
Ave. Profit Per Chick:              R6.00

Ave. Monthly Production of SH2000 Superhatch: 1920 Chicks @ R3.00 Profit Per Chick

Potential PROFIT Per Month  = R 11,520.00 

Author Muzi Mohale

Welcome to where I showcase small beginnings to inspire the next entrepreneur in you. It's a journey worth tapping into, many life lessons get to be experienced, money made and money lost...You're welcome to share your entrepreneurship journey with my audience.

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