When starting out with ostrich farming, you will quickly realize that to ensure a stable producing farm, a financial plan is of the utmost importance. To have products on the market, we need reliable production at the right price. If we are able to identify all aspects related to market development, we will gain a better understanding of how we can finance each aspect and manage it in the most profitable way.
There are business plan strategies that apply to all business models, but there are some that are unique to farming in general, and some are very specific to ostrich farming. It is good to learn from other companies and lend them good business management techniques, but always remembering to change the plan so that it is very specific to ostrich farming. For example, the response time in a poultry farm is on average 6 weeks, while the response time in an ostrich farm is up to 14 months, depending on the market it serves. Therefore, much more care must be taken when planning the cash flow of the company, as the period of time before financial returns are obtained to facilitate the cash flow will take months or even years.
Therefore, it is imperative that you fully understand the market you are entering, while implementing the experiences of other successful agribusinesses in your own business plan.
The first step you must take is to define the market you intend to serve. Find out what the requirements are for this market: What age and quality of ostrich is needed for this market? What additional certification or quality controls are needed?
Once you fully understand your market, you can plan the steps you’ll need to take to get there. Only then can you establish an operational plan and put it into practice.
• To set up your operational plans, you need to research a number of business aspects:
• Define your management structure
• Define the volume with which the company will start
• Define the growth rate and possible areas of expansion, with schedules.
• Understand the quality requirements that you must meet
• Develop the necessary infrastructure and cooperation of interdependent operations.
• Find a source for your live ostriches and ostrich eggs
• Identify networking opportunities, joint ventures, and cooperations and partnerships that you will need to optimize production.
• Develop a training program for all personnel and interdependent operations.
• Develop your product line
It will be necessary to define several daily, weekly or seasonal activities for the smooth running of operations in your ostrich farming business. While it is true that you can develop a plan as you learn the process, this is not good management practice. By researching your options and learning from the experiences of other ostrich farms, you can implement a proven production plan in advance. This will not leave room for errors due to lack of knowledge.
Research activities include:
• What feeding program will you follow? Decide in advance where you will get your rations and whether you will make your own feed or buy ready-made feed.
• Research the benefits of different types of feed, as well as how they are presented.
• How will the ostrich feed be distributed and how often?
• What will you do with hatching ostrich eggs?
• How and where will the chicks be raised?
• What kind of pens will you have for the ostriches?
• How will you guarantee the biosecurity of your farm?
• What will your transportation needs be?
• What are the safety risks involved for workers and what measures will be implemented to ensure a safe and healthy environment for livestock and workers?
• What products will you produce and / or manufacture?
• What processes should be outsourced?
• What are your market requirements?
• How will the products be distributed and marketed?
Once you have researched each aspect thoroughly, you are ready to put this knowledge into practice with success, as you move your ostrich farming business from a planning phase to the development phase and finally to production.