Many people dream of owning a farm, with cows, horses, chickens, and other animals grazing in the pasture. They dream of red barns, picking up eggs in the morning, and milking their cow for fresh, raw milk. Yes, this is a simple life, and there are many advantages to it. But can you really make money raising chickens for eggs?
Eggs are an obvious go-to for farmers who want to earn a bit of extra cash on the side. If you have enough chickens, you can easily pick more eggs every day than you will ever use… which means that you will have farm-fresh eggs to sell to people who like them.
There are many people in the world who will pay premium-dollar for farm-fresh, organic eggs. And if you can tap into that market with your own chickens and eggs, you might stand to make some pretty good money.
Making Money Raising Chickens For Eggs
As amazing as the idea sounds, selling eggs isn't going to be an automatic way to earn. There are a few steps that are involved in selling farm-fresh eggs, along with challenges to consider. So, let's take a look at exactly what is involved.
The Basics: You Need A Place To Keep Chickens
This side hustle is obviously not going to work for you if you don't have a place to keep chickens. If you live in the country, this is easy. You can just build a chicken coop and get to work!
But if you live in town, this can be a bit more complicated. Some cities and towns have regulations regarding chickens within city limits… so you will need to check your local regulations to find out what it will take, or if it is even possible, to keep chickens.
For example… in a small town that I used to live in, you could only have up to 6 chickens in your backyard at any given time, etc.
You Will Need Chickens
You can often order chickens through the local farm store. You can also order them online, buy them from other nearby farmers, etc.
There are many ways to go about getting chickens, but keep a few things in mind.
- Older chickens may not lay as many eggs
- New chicks will take some time to mature before they start to lay eggs
- Some breeds are known for producing more eggs more consistently than others
- The overall health and well-being of your chickens will play a big role in determining how profitable they are
- You will want mostly hens, as they are the ones who lay the eggs (this may seem obvious, but it never hurts to be specific)
- You actually don't even need a rooster, as hens will lay eggs without one
- If you want to hatch eggs in the future, you will need a rooster, as without one, you won't get fertilized eggs
You Will Need Enough Chickens To Supply The Eggs You Want To Sell
As a general rule, a chicken of good-laying breed, who is less than two years old, can usually be counted on to lay about 5-7 eggs per week.
This means that three quality laying hens will usually yield at least a dozen eggs per week or more.
When you put this into perspective, it is easy to calculate how many eggs you are likely to gather from a certain number of chickens.
Keep in mind that some chicken breeds don't lay as well in the winter… so you may need to keep a few extra chickens over the course of the winter to ramp-up egg production, so that you don't miss out on the numbers you need to keep up your side-hustle.
How Much Money Can You Earn Selling Farm-Fresh Eggs?
Farm fresh eggs generally sell for anywhere from $2.50 to $5.00 per dozen, depending on where you live.
Of course, you also have to take into account the costs of keeping chickens. Supplying them with water is cheap… but feed can get expensive.
A 50 pound bag of organic feed will usually cost $30 or more, depending on where you are and what you are buying. Six chickens will eat a bag of feed like this in about a month.
But at the same time, you can expect to get somewhere around 3 dozen eggs or more from this number of chickens per-week… and if you are selling the eggs for $3 a dozen, that ends up being $36.
That profit margin may seem slim, but as you increase the number of chickens, it grows. Plus, a lot of healthy laying hens will tend to lay almost one egg a day… so a maximum yield on eggs from 6 chickens per week is actually closer to 3.5 dozen eggs… which makes your profit margins even better.
In other words, you may not get rich from this side-hustle. But it is most certainly a hustle that can put some extra money into your pocket. At the very least, it is a hustle that will allow the chickens to pay for themselves, while affording you farm-fresh eggs every week for nothing but your labor in taking care of the hens.
That's not a bad deal, right? Especially if having a farm is something that means a lot to you!
Researching Chicken Breeds
Another thing that you may want to do is research chicken breeds. If you buy chickens of the breeds that tend to lay more, you can get better margins and increased egg production.
Low-yield breeds, on the other hand, are better off for people who don't really want too many eggs.
The best breeds for egg-laying tend to be…
- Hybrid Chickens
- Rhode Island Reds
- Plymouth Rocks
- Buff Orpingtons
Building Your Chicken Coop
It is pretty difficult to track down eggs if you don't have a chicken coop.
For that reason, if you want to sell eggs as a side hustle, it is in your best interest to have a chicken coop that your hens can lay in and live in.
This coop will require enough room for the chickens to lay in, places for the hens to nest in, regular cleaning and care, and usually a fenced-in yard where the chickens to run around outside. It will also require a place for them to roost at night.
The inside of a chicken coop can get pretty nasty if you don't keep it cleaned well enough, so it is important that you keep it fresh and clean by putting some work into it on an almost daily basis.
Your chickens will be a lot healthier and happier if you keep the coop clean!
Marketing Your Eggs
Farmers take many different approaches to selling farm-fresh eggs. They might put up a sign at the end of their driveway, sell the eggs at farmer's markets, put up flyers at the local health-food store, or even use word-of-mouth amongst family and friends to let people know that they are looking to sell some eggs.
Marketing your eggs can be tough at first… but the great thing about this business is that customers will usually tend to be pretty regular.
Once someone buys eggs from you and enjoys them, they will tend to keep buying them every week… as most families use eggs on a regular basis.
The recurring nature of the income is really helpful, and it makes this side-hustle idea even more attractive for farmers who could use some regular extra cash.
My Personal Feelings About Selling Eggs As A Side Hustle
I've actually known people who have made this work. It is just a super-simple side hustle that works really well for people who either have, or want, chickens.
This side hustle idea is probably not going to be a good idea for people who live in town, as people who live in town can't usually keep enough chickens to make it work… if they can even keep chickens at all.
It is also not a good idea for anyone who doesn't like the idea of raising chickens.
This is a pretty cool side hustle if you really love chickens. But it isn't a very cool hustle if you don't!
Chickens are relatively easy to care for, but they also require a lot of attention and responsibility. You need to feed them every day, close them in every night, clean their pens, and gather the eggs.
If left alone even for one day without care, chickens can tend to make a pretty big mess… which means that if you have them, you will definitely need to make plans to have them cared for if you want to go on a vacation or leave for more than a day.
This side hustle won't make you rich, and it isn't for everyone. But for those who love the idea of raising chickens, it can certainly earn you some extra cash and serve as a viable way to get some extra money coming in.
Our Final Opinion Of Raising Chickens To Sell Eggs
Should you buy some chickens and try to sell the farm-fresh eggs as a side hustle?
There are a lot of ways to make money online. Some are good, some not, but ALL of them are still just trading hours for dollars.
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