The catfish farming business is simply one of the budding businesses in Kenya today. It involves the cultivation and marketing of catfishes. The process is theoretically but practically simple thus:
- Build either an earthen, concrete or tarpaulin pond.
- Stock your pond with either the fingerlings or juveniles
- Feeding your fishes to marketable size.
- Sell your fish, make profits, and start over again.
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Popular Catfish Farming Business Models In Kenya
There are basically two (2) approaches to the Catfish farming business. You could either integrate both or run them separately:
Nursery Fish Farming:
Here you induce the female fishes to lay eggs. The eggs are then fertilized, incubated, and hatched into “fries”.
Grow Out Fish Farming:
Instead of going through the above method, you could simply buy fries from vendors or farmers and grow them to market size, then sell-off.
Market Demand, Competition, and Opportunities In Catfish Farming Business in Kenya
With the current shift to agricultural business, in Kenya, more and more people have plunged into this sector.
Also, recently, there has been an increase in the consumption of Catfish in Kenya.
Amongst the popular consumers of catfish in Kenya includes Pepper Soup Joints, Hotels, Restaurants, Fast food centres, Beer Parlors etc. This shows that there is a prevailing market for the business and the opportunities to make a living from the business are there.
Nonetheless, more people want to get into the business of catfish farming in Kenya and they want to get it right, so if you’ve made up your mind to excel in this business, you can do it.
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A Steps-by-Step Guide To Catfish Farming Business In Kenya
Get Trained First:
You cannot run a catfish farming business if you are a novice in the business. So, get trained first.
You can achieve this via apprenticeship, formal school training in a tertiary institution or online using YouTube, Blogs, and websites on the catfish farming business.
Get The Required Catfish Farming Facilities & Machinery
This may include some of the following:
- 4 Constructed Ponds each of about 8 square metres in area.
A constant supply of fresh water from a well or borehole;
A half plot of land;
Plastic containers and one square metre of the net.
Select Your Pond Type:
The capacity you wish to operate your catfish farming at will determine your pond size, type, and shape.
Study And Understand The Kenyan Catfish Farming Market:
This is where the need for a feasibility study of your terrain and marker becomes necessary. The result of which will expose your possibility of making a profit or loss, the demand level for catfish in the area, prevailing competitors, and exact customers’ needs etc.
This covers staffing and advisers for Catfish Farming Business in Kenya
Here, apart from the people employed during the pond construction, the major staff you will require are people to feed the fish, clean the ponds, and secure the farm. And take care of sales. These must not necessarily be experts. A basic SSCE certification is ok.
The advisers you will require as a new startup include veterans in the field of fish farming. These are successful people who have seen the ins and outs of this business and are willing to put you on the right path.
Marketing And Advertisement Strategies:
After all these, you need to market your business and make sales. Below are some of the available options you might opt for:
- “Word of mouth” publicity by self, friends, and family.
Branding of clothes for the workers in the farmhouse.
Erecting a billboard or a signpost at the entrance to the farm
Distributing Leaflets, flyers, and Business cards.
Advertising in local newspapers, magazines etc.
Advertising on social media and the internet.
Tips For Profitability
Being informed on how to deploy test kits for checking water quality goes a long way in reducing the selling prices of fish.
Additionally, endure you keep detailed and accurate records of your daily farm (business) activities.
This will assist you in making rational appraisals and profitability estimates.
The Volume of catfish feed intake is to be increased as the fishes grow, and this should be done every two weeks. Underfeeding and overfeeding should be avoided.
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To ascertain your fish’s growth rate, take a few catfish samples and weigh them on a scale. This will tell whether your fish are growing or are redundant.