Pig farming or piggery as it is fondly called is one of the most lucrative farm practices in Nigeria due to some obvious facts; Pigs are prolific animals, Pigs feed basically on anything, source of feeds are cheap and readily available compared to other farm practices, there are alternative sources of feeding that most of their feed components can easily be sourced locally.
In addition the demand for pork(pig meat) in Nigeria is generally increasing due to high demand and because pork is one of the cheapest sources of protein in Nigeria compared to beef and chicken.
One of the major reasons why piggery is easy to run and manage is you can also plant your pigs feeds such as maize, cassava, potato etc thereby saving feed cost significantly.
The common practice in breeding pigs in Nigeria is a closed system or in a controlled environment where pigs are breed in pens.
Normally it takes between 5 to 8 (five to eight) months for pigs to grow to from piglets to maturity between seventy kilograms 70kg and over a hundred kilogram (100kg). One good thing about piggery is you can start with a very little capital, as low as Two Hundred Thousand Naira (N200,000) and still make significant profit by renting a pen rather than building one.
No wonder in 2014, The Lagos State Government through the ministry of Agriculture said the state has the potential of generating over Two Billion Dollars ($2,000,000,000) approximately six hundred billion Naira(N600,000,000) yearly from pig farming.
The biggest pig farm in sub Saharan Africa is located in Oke Aro Lagos popularly known as the Oke Aro pig farm estate. There are over 3,000 pig farmers in that farm and it is managed by the Lagos State Government. It allows purchasing and rentals of pens.
ADVANTAGES OF PIG FARMING
- Highly prolific : Pigs generally give birth to high number of piglets up to 20 piglets in one litter. Averagely a pig gives birth to between 6 to 10 piglets, and they can farrow twice in a year. Meaning every year you should get an average of about 12 piglets from a sow (a female pig).
- Cheap to run and maintain: Running a piggery business is very cheap to run and maintain as you can easily source for their feeds around by getting waste products from markets, fastfoods, factories and other industrial waste then compound with food rich in energy and fibre to give you a desired result.
- It is very profitable: Pig farming is very profitable, A mature pigs sells for between Twenty Two Thousand naira (N22,000) to about Thirty Thousand Naira (N30,000) or more depending on the weight. Imagine producing just 100 pigs yearly. That’s roughly about Two million two hundred thousand naira (N2,200,000) to about Three Million Naira (N3,000,000) yearly.
- Feeds can easily be sources: Pig feeds are affordable and can easily be sourced.
- The market is readily available: The market is readily available, selling your pigs would not be an issue, the issue you might have could be meeting demands as pig farmers are not currently meeting demands.
PIG FARMING TERMINOLOGIES
Here are terminologies you should get familiar with when going into pig farming:
Pen: This is where the pigs are breed
Pig or swine: This is the general name used to address the pig species.
Piglet: These are young pigs between the ages of 1 day to about 8 weeks. These pigs are still sucking from their mother.
Weaners or weaned pigs: These are pigs between the ages of 6 weeks to 12 weeks. These are pigs that has just been weaned or separated from their mothers.
Boar: male pig of breeding age.
Hog or Castrated pig: A male pig that the scrotum has been removed.
Growers: A young male or female pig between the ages of 3 months to about 6 months.
Gilt: young female pig that has not yet been mated.
Sow: breeding female pig
Pork: Pig meat
Farrow: Process of a giving birth to piglets
POPULAR PIG BREEDS IN NIGERIA
In Nigeria the popular pig breeds are ; the local breeds (they usually not as massive as the exotic breeds, they come in white, black or brown color) exotic reeds includes the Yorkshire, Duroc, Landrace, Hampshire, large white, Hampshire, camborough etc
HOW TO SET UP PIG FARMING IN NIGERIA
Before you set up a pig farm, you need to understand the business in terms of the technical know how and basic understanding of the business. To set-up a successful pig farm or piggery business, you need to have an indepth understanding of the business. Here are the following things you need to know or put in place:
- Knowledge of the business: Before setting up a business you need to understand the business or have a little knowledge of the business in terms of breeds, costs, feeding formulation, medications, best practices etc. This will enable you maximize profit and fully prepare for any future challenge.
- Breeding Site: One of the most important factors in piggery is the breeding site or the pig farm. Currently there are two main piggery estates in Nigeria and they are both in Lagos State, Nigeria. There is one at Oke Aro and another is at Gberigbe in Ikorodu. This doesn’t mean you cannot have your own private pig farm outside this location. But the good thing about these locations is, it allows you start small and gives you the flexibility to rent a small room between N1,500 and N2,500 and big rooms from as low as N3,000. But if you are considering massive farms, It will be advisable to purchase land in rural or undeveloped settlement far away from residential. You could get a land in some areas from as low as N100,000 per acre to start your farm.
- Build Standard Pens: Pens are where you will breed your pigs, you therefore need to build the pens in such a way that It will allow you to accommodate all your animals and also give room for expansion in the future.
- Planning: This is one area where you have to pay good attention as a wrong plan may lead to disaster in the future. You need to plan your pen in such a way where it will accommodate all the animals you intend to breed and to prevent overcrowding, also you have to factor in special places for inpigs or inglits to farrow. You also have to plan for feeding and other things needed in the daily running of the farm.
- Buy Good Breeds: One of the most important factors in piggery after feed is the pig breeds. Some breeds are generally known to grow bigger, faster and larger than their counterparts under the same feeding and environmental conditions. The common breeds are large white, duroc, Yorkshire, landrace , camborough etc
- Feeding: In piggery, feeding takes approximately 70% of the total cost of production. The feed components consist of PKC (palm kernel cake), maize, cassava, cassava peel, cassava meal, rice shaft , spent grains , Groundnut cake etc. All this can easily be sourced locaally.
- Maintain a Standard and healthy Environment: Contrary to popular beliefs that pigs are dirty animals. Pigs are very clean animals and love to be breed in clean environment. Though pigs are very rugged, One of the ways to be safe is to keep a clean and healthy environment for your pigs to breeds, build standard drainage system to ensure free flow of animal waste and maintain top notch bio security to keep your pigs safe.
- Train or Employ Experienced Workers: Another important factor in piggery is the attendants that works in the farm premises. They need to be trained or experienced in this field to avoid trials and errors which could lead to the pigs death.
- Employ the Service of a veterinary Doctor: You can’t run a successful pig business without employing the service of a veterinary doctor. This is mostly done in a part time basis or when the need arises.
Please before you venture into piggery , visit other pig farms, meet with professionals, ask questions, google sometimes can be your best option. Always consult experts and Feel free to ask any question and we will be glad to answer your questions.
If you are trying to set up a pig farm or need expert advice and consultation, feel free to contact us, we will be glad to help you achieve your aims and objectives. Contact us