The rising cost of commercial feed has caused many farmers to shut down production entirely due to a lack of profitability. In this post, we would be showing you how to reduce the cost of production for your catfish business, and also a few extra steps you can take to improve your profit margins as a farmer.
Gone are the days when people went into farming purely out of passion, in today’s world, passion without the requisite knowledge could lead to your doom. Many farmers are living hand to mouth and struggling to become profitable in the catfish business because they do not understand that cutting down costs is important if they are to succeed.
If you are a Catfish farmer, being able to estimate if your venture would be profitable is important, we developed the catfish farming profitability calculator to help you ascertain whether the business is profitable in your locality, or not, the catfish farming profitability calculator would also help you estimate the actual cost of feeding your fingerings for the 6 months period and the percentage of profits to expects.
However, whichever figure the tool would give you, you can cut it down by 40% if you follow these major steps to reduce the cost of production for your catfish business.
How to Reduce the cost of Catfish Production
- Introduce Alternative Feeding Methods
- Produce Your Own Feed
- Produce Your Own Fingerlings
- Introduce Nitrite Eating Bacteria
Introduce Alternative Feeding Methods
It is an established fact, that over 80% of the cost of catfish production comes from feeds. With the ever-increasing cost of commercially available feeds, here are a few methods you can use to reduce the cost of catfish production by over 40%
- Duck weeds
Use Duck Weeds
The dry body mass of duckweed contains about 35% crude proteins, almost equivalent to the protein contents of commercially available feed.
Get yourself a small colony of duckweeds, grow it, and supply your fish on a daily basis.
This approach alone is known to have saved catfish farmers up to 20% of their feeding costs.
The crude protein percentages in maggots are about 28% to 42%. Making it a high-quality protein supplement for your catfish business.
Farmers who use maggots to supplement their catfish feed have reportedly reduced their cost of production by almost 40%, and have achieved good feed-to-fish weight conversions.
Maggots can be produced using black soldier flies at large scales to reduce the cost of catfish production.
The video below would give you a general idea of how to produce maggots using black soldier flies, however, if you require detailed mentorship, we recommend our fish feed production course for you.
Produce Your Own Feed
Producing your own feed can cut down your cost of catfish production by over 50%. You require 4 equipment to successfully produce your own floating fish feed.
If you are producing catfish anywhere above 10,000 fingerlings, you are better off producing your own feed. Do not be scared of getting the formula wrong, our catfish feed formulator would be a good aid in your pursuits.
You can easily produce your own feeds using maize, duckweed, maize, soya beans, maize, maggots, or any combination of carbohydrate and protein-dense foods. Our Catfish Feed Formulator would aid you in determining what percentages to use to get good results.
Producing feed isn’t a rocket sign, do not be deceived into thinking you need a fish meal before you can produce your own feed.
While a fish meal is great, it is important to understand that protein is protein, and getting yourself the cheapest source of high-quality proteins is far better.
Produce Your Own Fingerlings
There are hatcheries out there where you can purchase your fingerlings, but this brings about a lot of uncertainties in your business and primarily also increase your cost of production. Producing your own fingerlings help you cut out the middle man, saving you money but more importantly, it helps you take control of the quality of the fingerlings you are stocking.
Fish farming is an expensive venture, producing your own fingerlings, would cut down your cost of production by up to 10%, further saving you some money.
Introduce Nitrite Eating Bacteria
One major cost of catfish farming is maintaining the quality of the water, for most farmers, this requires frequent changing of water.
Fish eats feed, and poops into the water, this poops often contain a high amount of ammonia which ends up polluting the water. We can solve this problem by adding into our ponds, nitrite-eating bacteria such as Nitrobacter, Nitrospina, and Nitrococcus.
How to Improve Your Profit Margins in CatFish Business
We have already established that catfish production is capital intensive, and while the methods we have outlined above can help you cut down your cost of production and eventually increase your profit margins, they are all at the production level and are about optimising production.
It is an established fact that middle men and restaurants undercut farmers, and squeeze farmers of much-needed revenues. However, nothing stops the farmer from adding some value to the catfish and doubling his revenues.
Below are two major things you can do to improve your profit margins in the catfish business.
- Process your fish
- Export your fish
Process Your Fish
Get yourself a smoking kink and add some value to your fish by smoking them, smoked fish sells for twice as much more than selling to middle men, in some cases, even 3 times the selling price.
By smoking your fish, you give yourself an awesome choice to increase your profit margins in the catfish industry.
Having your own fish-smoking business also gives you higher negotiating power, it takes you out of the mercy of the middle men who would want to bully you.
Export Your Fish
Exporting your fish to European or other well-developed markets gives you an edge over other farmers. The fact is, when too many farmers are competing to sell to the very few restaurants available, the competition would cause farmers to under cut each other in a bid to offload their products.
However, there is a better way, in this day and age, you should use the internet, to reach out and get better market for your produce.