In this part of the world, there are so many businesses where people don’t go into; they seem to choose the all- too-familiar businesses which they have witnessed someone make money from it.
Snail farming is also known as heliculture or heliciculture and it involves the process of raising land snails for daily human use and consumptions. Snail flesh is used as edible escargot, Snail slime is used for cosmetics and also snail eggs is used for human consumption as caviar.
Snails either land snails, freshwater snails or sea snails are mostly reared in African countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Algeria, South Africa, Uganda, Morocco, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Mozambique, Botswana, Tanzania, Zambia, Rwanda etc. Snails are reared mostly in Southern Africa, Eastern Africa and Western Africa.
Snail farming in Africa requires the right equipment and supplies like:
i. Snail pens or enclosures
Device for measurements of humidity;
iv. Soil moisture sensor
v. In foot candles.
vi. A weight scale and an instrument to measure snail size.
vii. Kit for testing soil contents.
viii. Magnifying glass for clearer view of eggs. etc.
Snail farming is one of those businesses that people in this part of the world do not consider at all but it has the potential to yield good profit if handled correctly.
There are some factors that has made some people stay away from snail business one of it is the misconception that snails can be picked from bushes so there will be no people to buy and what is involved in starting the business. There are ignorance of the large market waiting for anybody to take advantage; anybody body that buys cow meat can buy snail meat.
So if you have been considering starting snail farming this is the right time, get the knowledge and start today.
WHAT YOU NEED TO START A SNAIL FARM:
How To Start A Snail Farming Business
1) A BUSINESS PLAN:
This is the first step in starting any new business. At this stage, analysis of the proposed business is done to see the size of the market available at that time.
Checking to see if there is a market for your goods is very important as you do not want to run a business where you don’t have buyers or customers. This stage also makes it possible to know who your targeted market is like in terms of their financial power.
Then how to get people to know about your business and how to take your product to buyers.
There is no business without weaknesses and strengths. So this business is not different and some times it depends on the environment. So try to point out business. Also determine the capital will be needed to start.
2) SELECTING THE RIGHT SPECIE:
After constructing your snailery (snail house) you are now faced with the task of choosing the right specie of snail that will be productive. They are many species of snail in Africa example: Pond snail, Apple snail, Tracked Nerite snail,Horned Nerite snail, Zebra Nerite snail e.t.c
Helix aspersa also known as the French “petit gris,” “small grey snail,” the “escargot chagrine,” or “la zigrinata.” is mostly reared in south Africa.
The best specie of snail for snail farming is Achatina Achatina (also called Giant Ghana Snail) because of it hard shell (not easily damaged) and high productivity.
Achatina achatina is believed to be native to West Africa, within 165 to 350 kilometres of the coasts of Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Togo, Benin, Ghana, Liberia and Ivory Coast.
Finally after getting your business plan ready and choice of snail, the last thing and the most important is getting the capital. First you need to know what the capital is then you start.
The business plan should pretty much tell you how much will be needed to launch your new business. You should be careful with the urge that comes to get things completed immediately; take things one step at a time.
4) HARVESTING AND MARKETING
After Your Snails are matured, harvest them for marketing. Be warned, not to sell immature snails. You have to show your snails to interested buyers. Meet hotel owners, market women, shops, restaurants and joints in order to market your product (snails).
Snail farming is a lucrative business in each African countries creating opportunities to farmers. If you have passion for this business, you have start immediately without delay.
Even if you want to get a loan from bank having a good business plan is a very good place to start.