The 3% Mortality Rule

By Lynette Simjango

A smart farmer intergrates both short term and long term projects on the farm. This is because short term projects like poultry and horticulture have quick returns that finance the day to day running of the busines whilst long term projects like beef and fruit tree production expands the business.


Let’s talk about Poultry production for a start. Poultry production is only lucrative when doing big numbers. After 6 weeks, your ife would have changed, that’s if you do it right. Many people are into Poultry production. Some have turned their bedrooms into fowl runs while others have been smart enough to construct a Poultry house on that limited space in the backyard. Everyone wants an extra income but is it working. Lets look at the numbers below👇
If a farmer is doing lets say 100 broilers, assuming a production cost of about $2.95 per bird, it means the Total cost of production for that Project is $295, right. Assuming that the market is not a challenge and they sell each bird for $5, the Gross Income $500 minus our costs, they get a net income of $295, not bad right? Kindly note in this example we have assumed a mortality rate of 0% but is it even possible 🤔.


Most farmers are encouraged to maintain their mortality rate at 3% so as to maximize returns. Using the example above, when 10 birds die and you manage to sell 90 birds, you feel like you have made an achievement but is it? That 10 % mortality rate is too high for a farmer who is in business to make money. Thats like a $20.5net income that never made it to your pockets. The figure might look small but it has a significant effect on production as you scale up! Do the maths with 10000 birds and you will see! So as a farmer you are ecouraged to maintain your mortality rate at 3%, anything above that makes farming a hobby and not a business. Learn from the expert!

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