Introduction to Poultry Farming in Brazil: Poultry farming is defined as the form of animal husbandry which raises domesticated birds like chickens, ducks, turkeys, and geese to produce meat or eggs for food. It has originated from the agricultural era and poultry mostly chickens are farmed in great numbers. Poultry farming in Brazil employs more than 3.6 million people directly or indirectly and accounts for around 1.5% of the National Gross Domestic Product. Even though there are many species that come under poultry, we will be discussing mostly chicken farming in Brazil.
Generally, poultry farming is the breeding of birds, but the term is more specifically reserved for the breeding of domestic birds. The poultry sector is represented by dozens of thousands of integrated producers, hundreds of processing companies, and dozens of exporters. Its social importance is also verified by its strong presence in Brazil’s countryside mostly in the Southern and Southeastern states. In many cities, poultry farming is the main economic activity. The importance of poultry farming can be given below;
- Poultry farming provides a high yield.
- Much capital is not required to start a poultry business.
- Lots of spaces are not required to begin the poultry farming business.
- Poultry farming might be immediately lucrative.
- Only less maintenance is required for poultry farmers.
- You can easily acquire a license for the poultry business.
- Financial institutions and businessmen will approve lending packages for poultry farmers.
- Poultry farming has a quick return on your investment.
- Marketing is very easy.
Usually, Brazil is the world’s largest broiler meat exporter. Health control, knowledge, and technology in Poultry, as well as the natural aspects of the country, are pointed out as the keys to the success of that product in the market. Brazilian broiler production grew significantly in the last decade; though it creates jobs and has a significant social role in the Brazilian economy.
Poultry farming classification focuses on the poultry production principles and practices and also discusses food value and processing of poultry products. Poultry farming has become one of the most important aspects of agriculture in Brazil. The largest proportion of poultry meat and eggs were found to be produced by intensive poultry farming businesses. Best practices in Brazil meet international standards and World Animal Health Organization (OIE) guidelines on animal welfare and in recent years have shown great progress. One of the indicators is the average density of chickens per square meter in poultry farming houses.
A Guide to Poultry Farming In Brazil and Poultry Management Practices
Benefits of Poultry Farming in Brazil: The poultry farming business has several benefits. So, many farmers prefer to invest in this business. Poultry farms established mainly to produce eggs, meat and generating high revenue from these products. The benefits of Poultry farming in Brazil can be given below;
Less capital required – The main benefit of poultry farming is that it doesn’t need high capital for starting. You need basic capital to start raising the poultry business. Also, most of the poultry birds are not expensive to start raising the business.
No need for a big space – Unless your plans involve the start of a significant commercial poultry farming business, then you won’t need a lot of space to get this business opportunity off of the ground. The poultry farming business doesn’t need a big space unless you are going to start commercially. Therefore, if you are interested in poultry farming, then you can easily do it in your backyard with several birds.
High returns in a short period – Commercial poultry farming business ensures a high return of investment within a short period. Few poultry birds like broiler chickens take a shorter duration of time to mature and generating profit. Poultry products are not much expensive.
High maintenance not required – In the poultry farming business, high maintenance is not required. Also, you can minimize diseases in poultry birds by following proper hygiene and care. Diseases are less in some poultry birds such as quails, and turkeys, etc.
License is not compulsory – In most cases, it must be noted that you don’t need any license. Also getting a license from the relevant authority is easy for poultry.
Huge global demand – The poultry farming business gives you fresh and nutritious food and has a huge global demand. Global consumers of poultry products prefer them due to their essential nutrients and freshness. Usually, poultry products are not much expensive and most people can afford those.
Easy marketing – Marketing poultry products is a very easy process. There is an established market in all places of the world for poultry products. Therefore, you can easily sell the products in your nearest local market.
Income and employment opportunities – The poultry farming business creates income and employment opportunities. Unemployed educated youth can easily make a great income by raising poultry business commercially.
The Scale of Poultry Farming in Brazil
In Brazil, this kind of business is run on a small, medium, or large scale.
- A small-scale poultry farm is required for about 1 to 8000 birds to be raised.
- The medium-scale poultry farm is where there are about 8001 to 100,000 birds to be raised.
- Large-scale poultry farming is required for about more than 100,000 birds to be raised.
Set Farm Location for Poultry Farming in Brazil
Poultry farming is a wide industry. There are mainly two types of farming you can choose from broilers and layers. Broilers raise for meat and layers raise for eggs.
Generally chicken farming business operates in multiple sectors. So, decide if you want to operate in all sectors or you want to restrict the poultry business to just one or two sectors of your choice especially in the beginning.
The below are the niches you can choose from.
- Meat production (Broilers breeding)
- Egg production (Layers breeding)
- Poultry feed production
- Chicken breeding (Hatchery)
- Egg and meat processing
You should think of setting poultry farm at the most appropriate location. The farm location must have all the necessary facilities. Try to build a poultry farm a little away from the town so that you can have the land and labor at a cheaper cost. However, setting up the poultry farm too far away from the nearest town will be a mistake. Also, a location too away from the city may cost you more on transportation.
Integrated System of Poultry Production in Brazil
The integrated system of poultry production, implemented in Brazil in the 1960s, allowed the consolidation of the production chain, harmonizing the activity of poultry farmers and meatpackers.
It is estimated that approximately 90% of industrial poultry production is under the integrated system of production. This integrated system consists of permanent support to poultry producers with the assistance of agronomists and vets, and the supply of the day-old chick, feed and medication, provided by the industry.
The role of the poultry farmers is to raise the birds based on the best production practices available and carefully follow the animal welfare guidelines, biosecurity, and animal health procedures. Such rules and standards are monitored by the companies, guaranteeing the traceability of the product from the farm of consumers.
Housing and Environment for Poultry Farming in Brazil
Firstly suitable poultry housing is important for a successful poultry farming business. Poultry birds can be raised in free-range and indoor production systems. In the case of indoor poultry production systems, it is very crucial to manage the environment. Poultry farming businesses need accurate management and the environment for better production. Whether the poultry raised in an indoor or outdoor system, make sure the good management, ventilation, lighting, temperature levels, and litter condition.
For small-scale poultry production, portable poultry houses are best and this is an organic method. But for sustainable commercial poultry farming, planned and properly designed poultry housing is essential to keep the poultry birds healthy and productive. Then, this will increase farming production and income. The poultry housing requirements are;
- Generally, the poultry house has to be well ventilated.
- Make a suitable poultry system for entrancing a sufficient amount of fresh air and light inside the house.
- Try and make the poultry house north to the south faced.
- In the case of making numerous poultry houses, the distance between one house to another house should be about 40 feet.
- Clean the house and the entire farm area properly, before bringing the chick into the poultry farm.
- Make deep liter clean regularly. You can use cheap materials like wooden material or rice ban for making liter.
- Keep the feeding and watering equipment at a proper distance from each other based on the number of birds.
- The poultry house must have all the required facilities for animals.
Environment – A good poultry housing system should have to be weatherproof. A weather-proof poultry housing system will keep the poultry birds safe from adverse weather conditions like cold, rain, wind, and hot sun, etc. The poultry housing system must have the facilities of providing warmth, particularly during the brooding period and winter season. The house should have to be well ventilated. It should have the facilities of protecting the poultry birds from harmful predators. Different types of innovative poultry housing designs are used in the poultry farming business in Brazil. It can be just a simple house, mobile or portable house, or fixed house with a permanent foundation.
Temperature and Ventilation for Poultry Farming in Brazil
In general, the ideal temperature level for optimum poultry production is 18-23°C. Birds like mammals are homoeothermic which means they can keep a relatively constant deep body temperature 42°C. The environment in which poultry is maintained is the most important factor affecting productivity.
Heating is necessary to provide the right temperature level in the brooder house. When the temperature level is less than required, the chicks try to get closer to the source of heat and huddle down under the brooder. When the temperature level is too high, the chicks will get away from the source of heat and may even pant or gasp. When the temperature level is right, the chicks will be found evenly scattered. In hot weather conditions, brooders are not necessary after the chicks are about 3 weeks old. Several devices can be used for providing artificial heat in poultry houses. Hover-type electric brooders are by far the common and practical these days. The temperature level in these brooders is thermostatically controlled. Though, many times the heat in the brooder house is provided by the use of electric bulbs of different intensities. In such cases, temperature regulation is difficult although not impossible. Though, infrared lamps are also good for brooding.
In the winter season, the poultry birds consume more feed, because they need more energy to keep their body warm. Most farmers provide the poultry with more food instead of heating the house. Also, you can use electric heaters or gas brooders to heat the poultry housing. Keep a thermometer inside every poultry house for measuring the daily temperature level, and always follow the weather forecasts.
Poultry Management Practices in Brazil
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Water space – Plentiful clean and fresh water is essential. A provision of 50 linear cm of water space per 100 chicks for the first two weeks has to be increased to 152 to 190 linear cm at 6 to 8 weeks. The height of the waterers must be maintained at 2·5 cm above the back height of the chicks to reduce spoilage. Antibiotics or other stress medications can be added to water if desired. All waterers must be cleaned daily. It can be desirable to hold a few chicks one at a time and teach them to drink.
Sanitation and hygiene – All movable equipment such as feeders, waterers, and hovers must be removed from the poultry house, cleaned, and disinfected. The interior, as well as exterior of the house, must be cleaned under pressure. The house must be disinfected with any commercial disinfectant solution at the recommended concentration. The insecticide must be sprayed to avoid insect threats. By using Malathion spray or blow lamping or both can be control ticks and mites. New litter must be spread after each cleaning. If necessary the insecticides must be mixed with litter at recommended doses.
Ventilation – Well ventilation inside poultry housing system play a very important role to control the indoor environment. It removes moisture, heat, and gas, etc., and brings fresh air inside the poultry house.
Lighting – Also, light is an important element for poultry farming. Poultry birds become sensitive to light. Though, light helps the poultry birds to be productive, finding food and simulating them for reproduction.
Nutrition and Feeding – Poultry convert feed into food products quickly. Their high rate of productivity results in high nutrient needs. Poultry needs the presence of at least 38 nutrients in their diets in appropriate concentrations and balance. Criteria used to determine the requirement for a given nutrient include growth, feed efficiency, egg production, prevention of deficiency symptoms, and poultry product quality. Consequently, adjustments must be made based on the bioavailability of nutrients in various feedstuffs.
Commercial poultry feeding management is a highly perfected science that ensures a maximum intake of energy for growth. Though, high-quality and well-balanced protein sources produce a maximum amount of muscle, organ, skin, and feather growth. The necessary minerals produce bones and eggs, with about 3 to 4% of the live bird being composed of minerals and 10% of the egg. Calcium, phosphorus, sodium, chlorine, potassium, sulfur, manganese, iron, copper, cobalt, magnesium, and zinc are all required for poultry birds. Also, some vitamins A, C, D, E, and K and all of the B vitamins are required. Antibiotics are used to stimulate appetite, control harmful bacteria, and prevent disease. For chickens, modern rations produce about 0.5 kg or 1 pound of broiler on about 0.9 kg (2 pounds) of feed and a dozen eggs from 2 kg (4.5 pounds) of feed.
Chicken Production in Brazil
Generally, chicken production is the most common in most parts of Brazil. Then, this is because fowls can be reared for both meat and eggs under most circumstances. Brazilian chicken has developed more rapidly, and with higher quality, better tasting meat, from the simple combination of advanced technology, genetics, and corn and soy-based feeds, allied to an integrated system between growers and slaughterhouses, which has guaranteed a competitive edge few other countries enjoy. Brazil can be mainly considered as something of the perfect environment for chicken farming, thanks to the sub-tropical climate where most of Brazil’s chicken farms are located. Its sustainable farming practices, which allow for good animal health conditions, environmentally-friendlier poultry production.
Brazilian chickens enjoy greater space and lower density than other major-scale poultry production countries around the world. Then, they have raised in semi-open-sided houses that are naturally lit by daylight, naturally ventilated, and require no heating. This has implicit benefits for animal welfare. Completely natural ventilation not only removes excess heat, moisture, dust, and odors but also helps dilute and expel airborne disease organisms. That strongly integrated production chain includes chicken suppliers, farmers, and exporters. Some 70% of Brazilian chicken exports come from smallholding chicken producers, many of whom have integrated abattoirs within their farms. Though, integrated abattoirs are better for animal welfare as they minimize the need for the transportation of live animals for slaughter.
Brazil is one of the few major poultry-producing countries that have never recorded a single case of avian influenza (bird flu). The country’s poultry sector is also completely free of Newcastle disease, and Brazil’s poultry exports are 100% hormone-free. All poultry produced is quality and health control processes, overseen by Brazil’s Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, and Supply (MAPA). Each stage of the production is carefully inspected by a large network of specialized departments and highly-trained professionals. Chicken consumption in Brazil tops that of other meats and accounts for around 45% of total animal protein consumption in Brazil.
Poultry Management Problems
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The major challenges of the indigenous poultry sub-sector include low genetic potential, low productivity, poor feeding with little supplementation, diseases, poor management, and lack of organized market. And, at the institutional level, the sub-sector is constrained by inadequate provision of extension, research, and development.
Various types of poultry diseases can cause serious loss in the poultry farming business in Brazil. Poultry diseases occur due to lack of proper care and management, inadequate nutritious feeding, and some other factors. Usually, diseases can be defined as changes of general or usual physical condition. Almost all types of animals can be affected by different kinds of diseases in their lifetime. Poultry birds are no exception, and they also get affected by numerous diseases. If you want to establish a profitable commercial farm or want to raise a few poultry birds in the backyard, then you must have to keep your birds free from all types of diseases.
Usually, poultry producers face problems during establishing a new poultry farming business such as lack of capital, location, housing, food management, and diseases, etc. Poultry diseases are most important to consider. Some diseases can destroy the whole farm and you might lose money seriously. The meat and egg production of poultry can suddenly decrease due to several types of diseases. Many poultry birds die every year throughout the world, due to several types of diseases.
Diseases and Parasites are Biggest Poultry Farming Problems
Some diseases and parasites can cause losses in egg production. Some breeds of poultry birds are resistant to certain diseases which make them superior to those that are easily infected by many diseases. Treat them immediately in case of any outbreak of diseases so that their products will not be tampered with. Also, you would never want to breed an ill chicken they could pass the illnesses down to future generations and you would have a constant battle in your hands. Always raised the healthiest chickens together and that have healthy chickens the more resistance they build up to diseases.
You might not be able to find any symptoms in your poultry farming. Not every disease gives any symptom, but in case you see strange signs on your farm inform the veterinary doctor at once. By doing this, the right drugs will be prescribed.
Feed Related Problem Poultry Farming System
Feeding related problem is another main problem we need to consider as this determines the growth of rate of our birds. Feeding is more than just given the birds feed, and they need balanced diets if you want them to do well. Nutrient deficiencies can adversely affect the development of pullets and the level of production of hens. The level of feed a bird will eat depend on its size, age and egg production rate, the energy level of the feed, and temperature of the house i.e., laying house.
The amount of feed consumed depends on the breed of birds. Egg quality is affected by the feed they eat; the quality of eggshells is determined by the level (amount) and the presence of vitamin D, Calcium, and other minerals in the feed. In short words, feed quality is necessary for profitable laying birds.
Water-Related Problem in Poultry Farming System
This problem should not be underrated, the water quality available is important; the acidity of the water must be checked and balanced before we give it to the birds. Acidic water will imply a negative effect on the life of the poultry birds as this will affect them in several ways. For this problem, water conditions must be checked before included in feeding fowls.
Management Related Problem in Poultry Farming System
Poultry management refers to the general hygiene of the entire farming system if you apply the above-listed solution and you are not properly taken care of the birds. Then, you will end up spending big money that will not materialize. Maintain 100% hygiene for the best performer of your birds, clean their house, and wash their drinkers and feeders. Carefully remove grasses from sounding to prevent predators that might want to affect them.
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