Mkulima, today you and I will be discussing the basics of starting out in dairy goat farming plus costs. These tips are from one of the most sorts after agriculture consultants in East and Central Africa, with practical reference to one of his projects running in Kenya.
In this new or ongoing venture as a farmer, there is none better to take notes from the founder of Wendy farms Ltd.
Our famercist started out in agriculture several years ago after leaving his full-time job as a journalist at K24tv on Kenya’s leading networks.
Starting out in dairy goat farming plus costs. Immediately he founded his company with the purchase of a hen and a cock that has grown into one of Kenya’s most valuable agriculture companies.
The farm/company deals in several agricultural practices including but not limited to dairy goat farming.
His latest agriculture venture in dairy goat farming a passion he says he has had for the longest time.
This is what we will be focusing on mkulima today.
How I built a goat shed with just a few cents and sense, no kidding – Caleb Karuga.
Location of structure
Now mkulima, lets dive head fast right in and build this baby up above the ground.
Ensure to follow the East-West orientation. This helps to avoid your valuable livestock from direct exposure to extreme weather.
With extreme weather, I mean exposure to sun rays or strong winds.
This is because both goats and chicken are very sensitive to cold temperatures.
To get the whole idea of building up the new mansion for your goats, make sure to involve a reliable and competent carpenter from the start.
Once you have your fundi and done with the amazing boardroom meeting with him or her where you negotiate costs, ensure to consult with at least 2 to 3 other different carpenters.
This will help you get a first-hand glimpse at the exact estimated costs of the project.
It will also go along way to help you understand the project better and better management and allocation of resources.
Once you have made up your mind, remember not to settle for the cheapest carpenter you get but one that can give you a quality finish.
To get your act in order, kindly inspect some of the work that he or she has done and completed in the past.
I would highly recommend you be hands-on during this project and avoid being a telephone farmer.
Be involved in the project from day one and even after completion.
Luckily Caleb Karuga has been working with the same fundi for over a decade. What a great relationship you must be thinking.
Build your own strong work ethic and relationship so we can envy you too.
Starting out in dairy goat farming plus costs just like anything needs cash. The experienced farmer and agribusiness consultant says that you should not lose an arm and leg to get your structure of the ground.
This applies to any construction you need be it for chicken, goats, cows, or anything you have in mind to boost productivity on your farm.
On a light note, I would like to remind you that this is not a beauty contest and go for functionality rather than beauty or the latest designs.
Make use of the locally available materials in your neighborhood or that you can access with ease.
Being that most farms are established in rural areas, it is even easier to get some of the materials to begin.
At this point, I would like to start off with a word of caution.
Never pay for your labor costs on a daily basis.
This is because paying for labor on a daily basis can easily drive up the costs of the project.
Instead, let the fundi bill you for the entire project duration and ensure once thee job is done. I don’t need to inform you how important it is to build strong relationships.
Like I said above this project needs all hands on deck.
Whenever possible accompany the fundi to the hardware to purchase what you need, or get a detailed list of items and purchase all of them.
Avoid lounging on your recliner or at your office desk high above the traffic as the work is in progress.
Caleb says he reduced his construction costs by reusing some materials from an earlier dairy cow unit that he had set up but failed at it. What a learning experience it must have been.
Our experienced farmer also warns that on the use of nails, fundis can get creative and drive up the costs at an estimate of about 1 and 2 thousand shillings daily.
It will be even cheaper for you if you can purchase a mature tree and cut it into the timber.
Experience is the best teacher since he learned that he could save some money using this method after spending the sum of 30 thousand on timber.
For roofing, purposes use second-hand iron sheets as most of them are durable and can serve for a significant duration.
In Nairobi, you can get this at Shauri Moyo next to City Stadium, along jogoo road.
During this project, be the manager.
Even without the experience in construction management, being hand son will be effective in making immediate design changes and improvements at the farm.
This will save on time and greatly improve the construction time frame and productivity.
This time spent on the farm will also be effective in building rapport with the individual building the project.
Remember the saying that goes, our network is our net worth.
Use whatever you have readily available.
He even shared the construction estimates for his new dairy goat shed.
The below costs are the estimates for housing 30 mature dairy goats.
Labour kshs 17,000
Timber Kshs 30,000
Nails Kshs 2350
Posts Kshs 15,000
Iron sheets N/A
Estimated costs kshs 64,350
I would like to hear your success story of how these tips from Caleb Karuga one of the legendary farmers and agribusiness consultants in East and Central Africa, have helped you start your own dairy goat farm or reduced start-up costs in other ventures.
All these are practical comprehensive guides. Don’t wait any longer hit the ground running #WeGoatMilk
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