Poultry Production – Marketing Problems of Poultry Farming in Nigeria




Poultry is a collective name given to a group of birds reared or hunted for useful purposes. (Aja 2007)

They are domesticated birds kept for egg or meat production which include chickens (domestic fowls) turkeys, ducks and geese (Chukwu, 2010).

Poultry is the quickest source of meat and its production process involves the least hazardous and arduous in relation to other livestock enterprise. Hence, increased poultry production is one of the surest and quickest ways of bridging the animal protein intake gap between developing countries of the world.

Although the task of bridging this protein intake gap appears formidable in view of the present economic and technological constraints besetting our livestock industry. Emphasis is on broiler production should be a key of bridging the protein intake gap. Poultry keeping in Nigeria has been one of the sources of animal protein to the ever- growing Nigerian population, making significant contribution to human nutrition and economic development. The Poultry sector constitute more than 57% of the total livestock production in Nigeria (Alabi and Osifo, 2004) and many people have gone into Poultry production either producing egg or meat or both (Ofuok and Aijeh, 2005).

In Nigeria, human population is on the increase FAO (1992) while food production growth is on decline. This has brought about food shortage especially animal protein (Brown and Kane, 1994). This problem has mostly among children and adolescents (Brown and Reme, 1994).

According to Oluyemi and Roberts (2000) one of the chief Poultry birds is broiler keeping which started in the late 1050s when strains were selectively bred for domestic and commercial use on many farms in different countries, (Austic and Neshein, 1990). The went further to explain that it is because broilers chicks are housed in large, windowless sheds, in massive flocks. Meanwhile, feeding, watering, temperature and ventilation are all automatic. Due to its ability to convert grain and other crop by products into meat and eggs with a short period of time, Poultry has great potential of providing protein need of man.

Maize accounts for the large proportion of about 45-55% of Poultry feed. Therefore any effort to substitute maize in Poultry feeds will significantly reduce the cost of production (Bamgbose, et al 2004).

In some countries like Nigeria, USA etc, maize is the number one feed or ingredients feed formulation because of its high conversion factor into meat, milk, and egg compared to other cereal grains (FAO 1997). This residue of maize known as chaff is relatively of large quantities in both rural and urban communities in Nigeria and therefore substituting maize in Poultry feed will significantly reduce the cost of production



With the federal government policies on food production, many people in Edda took to poultry farming.

The majority o them who are civil servants started small scale backyard production while others established commercial Poultry enterprise on personal basis.

Since 1976 till date, there has been astronomical increase in Poultry produce such as Poultry meat and egg. This has resulted in the slump and low returns due to much competition some farmers have even started leaving the poultry business.



(i) To investigate the marketing problems of the Poultry farmers in Afikpo South

(ii) To identify the major problems that is facing the Poultry farmers in marketing their products.

(iii) To suggest some possible ways of solving the identified problems.



The research project covers the eleven (11) communities that make up Afikpo South Local Government Area. The study includes both small and large scale Poultry farmers who are engaged in meat, egg or hatchery production and the marketing channels.



With much emphasis on self sufficiency in Poultry meat and egg production, farmers on co-operative basis loan money from the bank to aid in the production business of meat, eggs and day old chicks the outcome of this study will be beneficial not only to researchers but to the farmers (small or large scale farmers) in Afikpo South by providing enough work for farmers during slack period as well as increase the income of our rural farmers.



This study lasted for six (6) (months from April to September, 2012).



poultry keeping has been one of the most popular enterprise adopted by small and medium scale farmers in both rural and urban areas (Idowu et al; 2005) pigeons, ducks and geese were bred in China more than 3,000 years ago. Chickens, developed from the Asian Jundle fowl, where domesticated probably about the same time. In ancient and medieval times in the old word chickens were raised primarily for Cockfiglin.

In the 10th century, chickens were introduced into America from Europe, and turkeys were introduced into Europe from America. After cockfighting was outlawed in the united state, Canada, and Great Britain in the 19th century, poultry farmers raised chickens for exhibition purposes.

The modern poultry industry began in the late 19th century in Europe and America as breeders began to stress meat and egg production Although eggs were artificially incubated in ancient china and Egypt then down to Nigeria this method of hatching poultry was not used on a commercial scale until the 1870s. The first college department poultry husbandry was established in 1901 at the Connecticut agricultural college (now the University of Connecticut) in Nigeria today discoveries and inventions relating to the scientific housing, feeding and breeding of poultry product after the 1960s production and consumption of poultry products increased markedly during world war11 when meat from other livestock was scarce.

Since 1945,improved methods of storing and distributing poultry meat and eggs have helped stimulate consumption of the foods.important in the expansion of the poultry industry has been specialization in raising broilers. Poultry industry in Nigeria has made rapid progress in the last three decade.

Its development has not only been in size but also in productivity, technology up gradation and quality of its products measuring to strictest (EG/USA) norms. India occupies 4th place in the world for egg production and 5th place in the world for poultry meat production. The poultry industry in its position as a branch of agriculture has increased its importance during recent years as a supplied of these products. Morley, A. July(1995) said that for more than a quarter of a century, the relative importance of the poultry industry has steadily increased. He said that at least two reasons are responsible.

The relative efficiency of poultry in converting feed into food for humans. The fact that poultry production is not only a farm enterprise that uses relative inexpensive labour and provides considerable quantities of meat for home use in addition to production sold but also because there has been considerable commercial expansion of the industry. Poultry have been on the earth for over 150 million years, dating back to the original wild jungle fowl now include ducks, geese, turkeys, pigeons, guinea fowl and chickens in the list of species under the general term poultry.

Poultry provide humans with companionship, food and fiber in the form of eggs, meat and feathers. Many people have to raise and use birds for show and others poultry species at faire and other poultry shows. There is a large commercial chicken industry that provides us with egg and meat (Michael 2000). Feathers are used in the manufacturing of fertilizer, mattress, and pillow even as feather meal. Its droppings are one of the best manure in agriculture for crop farming. The meat is the chief source of protein to man, highly palatable. And its by product after carcass dressing saves as meat. It is regarded as white meat which is of good health standard because it contains fewer amounts of colostrums (Beryanim,2001).

He also stated that in research it is used for testing the efficiency of drugs and vaccine used in treating animal diseases. It is known to hence high rate of feed conversion which help to grow and mature fast (Benjamin, 2001). Kolls (1972) defend marketing as the performance of all business activities involved in the flow of goods and services from the point of initial agricultural production until they are in the hands of ultimate consumers.

By this definition, it is implied that a number of marketing function are performed as goods more from the point of ultimate consumption. In most developing countries, the poultry industries plays important roll in converting grains and other products into eggs and poultry meats for the nutritional benefits of mankind. Providing consumers with food products of superior quality as economically as possible and not reasonable cost in he main responsibility of agriculture.

The poultry in its position as a branch has increased in importance during recent years as a supplier of these products. Lioyd, (1963), also classified commercial egg product as subsidiary or specialist enterprises. Subsidiary unit contain about 200 or less poultry flocks while the specialist enterprises contain about one thousand or above poultry flock in the United States of America.

Thompson, and Foote (1952) comment on factors affecting egg and prices of poultry products said that the retail value of chicken and egg eaten very closely with changes in consumers income. Retail prices also follow the same general trend as the commercial broilers. Hughes and Elson (1992) said that, it is not just to develop a cost owner base and think that you have made it. You need to maintain those customers in order to attract others and this will be done by producing fresh eggs always. They also said that the problem poultry farmers are facing is that they are unable to send out on annual order. Letter, exploiting the virtues of their opinion and now they can do better job for the customers in order to satisfy them.

They went further to say that poultry farmers’ producers do not ensure the health and productivity of their flocks. This is so because they do not empty their best management practice that is recommended by the trade organization and consumers.

Thompson and Foote (1999) said that one of the major problems that poultry producers are facing in the bird production is the type of feed that they give to their birds.

They said that some of the poor quality feed that is given to the bird may not be the type of feed that the animal require and as such retard or reduce the growth rate o the birds. This issue of reduction in growth rate will affect the market price of the product. They also went further to say that consumers income in most years but the movement at time is modified by changes in market supplied and other factor.

In the book of Agriculture prices, Thompson and Foote (1952) stated that the expansion efficiency of egg production has partly brought about by the realization on the part of poultry nutritionists that less feed is consumed par egg produced when layers are fed heavier rates. This is opposite of the situation for either types of livestock for which more feed per unit o out-put is required as feeding rate are in sea seal.

Christenson and Migsshell (1912-1947) estimate that per capita demand has risen about equally for the various livestock’s products. Lower relative prices for chicken and egg have accompanied a higher relative consumption. Improducced quality of meat production resulting from the larger percentage of broilers have been of major importance the more even tended to expand annual consumption.

Fredicle, and Richard (1553) said that in wholesaler poultry markets, most chickens are sold from the farm as live birds. Though in some areas dressing plants are located close to the major poultry moves though wholesale, channels as fresh or frozen eviscerated poultry has tended to dimish with the increasing importance of the producers does not consider the age of the bird, its production use, the stage of the bird and the genetic factor of the birth in the preparation of the feed and makes the farmer to price a poor quality feed.

They concluded that the above problem which led to poor pricing of the farmers product and will tend to discourage production by farmers.

Kaws (1998) stated again that inadequate transportation and road accessibility can affect the easy transportation of food from rural to urban areas. He stated that in this case good road determines the quickest market ability of poultry farm is established or situated interior part of a certain village where there is no road that lead to where the poultry farm is located, it will be very difficult for customers to locate the road.

Even if the customers locate the poultry farm, it will be very difficult for them to transport the product and if they succeeded in transporting them, there will be a lot of damage that will be encountered to the product because of the bad road and will make them have problems like reduction in quality, low income yield the pricing in the market will reduce the consumers demand for that particular product in its marketing and the customer to go for another commodity and will be used to replace the rejected products.

The food and agricultural Organization (FAO) also recognized the importance of marketing in raising agricultural production when it stated that “marketing is the cruise of whole food to increase the output of food. It would equally compel to set up optional standard of nutrition unless means could be found to move.



From the view of points, realized on the problems of marketing poultry production in Afikpo South L.G.A., Ebonyi State which are bad market (lack of customers), fund to hire manpower, bad roads, lack of extension agent and inability of the government to provide vehicle for the extension agents to enter into the interior part of the area to teach the farmers the modern technologies. It can therefore be concluded that these problems arise because the farmers have no organized body that helps them in pursuing the broad objective of developing Agriculture in other to achieve self sufficiency in poultry production.

In conclusion, the poultry production and marketing business is a very good one that plays a very vital role in Afikpo South L.G.A. by converting grains and products into egg and poultry meat for the nutritional benefit of mankind.