Diversifying Your Operation: Part 1

Have you ever wondered about the economic impact of diversifying your operation with another species? Many grain farmers and animal protein producers are looking into adding new forms of income to decrease risks and increase profitability for their business. In the first part of this series, we will discuss the economic and production benefits of diversifying your business with poultry production.

Chicken Production Advantages

Simply like the saying “don’t put all of your eggs in one basket,” diversifying your farm income can decrease devastating losses from one bad market.growing for a contract grower is now easier than every, which helps mitigate risks involved and get a good loan deal from your local bank. Many local families are also adding to their family farm operation to bring back the next generation of the family, by including a diversified income and new form of labor. 

Not only is it a smart move economically, but it also helps to minimize the impacts on the environment, such as using poultry litter and manure for your crops. According to Oklahoma State University, poultry litter as a fertilizer on grass pasture can not only increase the yield, but also the protein content in the forage.

Why Poultry Litter?

Poultry manure is plentiful in a standard broiler operation, with each four-house broiler site producing about 1,200 tons of poultry litter per year, valued at about $40,000. The litter is full of nutrients that are not only valuable to pasture land but also row crops such as corn and soybeans, due to it’s high percentage of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Along with litter recycling as manure fertilizer, other by-products are rendered into pet foods as a protein source, making poultry production have no impact on landfills or waste centers, according to the University of Nebraska Extension.


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Now is a great time to expand your production into raising poultry, as the number of average birds at one time will increase in the state of Nebraska from 10 million to 30 million, due to rapid expansion of integrated producers and increased demand of poultry products by consumers. This increase in poultry production will be great for communities to boost local farm economies and create more job opportunities. The diversification can also be a huge benefit to your own family, with about 60% of contract broiler grower’s having a higher average household income than the U.S. overall average, according to the USDA Economic Research Service.

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Here at Settje Agri-Services, we are very excited to see diversity in production come to the Midwest states. Chicken production can be a great way to expand your farm income and learn a new side of the agriculture industry. To learn more about our poultry facilities and designs, contact us today.