Sheep farming as a business

Sheep farming as a business is a sure choice, because this niche of animal husbandry can be called a gold mine. Many farmers began precisely with sheep breeding, since the financial investments in the first stage are not required as impressive as for raising cows or pigs. In this article we will try to address the main issues related to starting a business on a sheep for a beginner farmer.

  1. General information on sheep husbandry
  2. Where to start business planning
  3. Pros of sheep husbandry
  4. Cons of sheep husbandry
  5. How to organize a pasture and a shepherd
  6. Features of the sheep breeding
  7. Methods of breeding sheep
  8. Staffing
  9. Features of the marketing of products
  10. The financial side of the question

Овцеводство как бизнес

Sheep farming as a business

General information on sheep farming

Every year around 8 tons of fresh mutton are sold in the world, and this figure is increasing every year. As for sheep husbandry in Russia, not everything is so rosy: now this industry is reviving after many years of pause.

If you look at the stage of development of this livestock industry, most of the livestock is owned by private individuals: about 9 million sheep, 5 million rubles. belong to various enterprises of the agricultural sector, the remaining 1.5 million belong to farms.

Where to start business planning

If you chose sheep business, you should give I’m aware that I’ll have to deal not only with livestock, but also partly with legal issues – this should be included in the action plan.The first thing you need to take care of is to register the company as a peasant farm, a peasant farm. This is an organization that brings together all the entrepreneurs who are engaged in the cultivation and marketing of livestock products. This also applies to sheep breeding as a business for beginners.

It is worth saying that it is not necessary to open a legal entity, this is not strictly mandatory, the procedure will largely resemble the creation of a regular IP. The only difference will be that the registration procedure at the peasant farm will be mandatory, this is an unexpected surprise for many beginning entrepreneurs.

Documents to be prepared for the beginning farmer:

  • application for registration in as a peasant farm, you need to attach a copy of the passport of the founder of the peasant farm;
  • a power of attorney certified by a notary public at the MFC;
  • the spine of the receipt for payment of all necessary fees, namely that a new farm is being formed;
  • original and copy of passport and IR; for those who are not citizens of the Russian Federation, it is enough to present a residence permit;
  • a document certifying that the SES has given the green light to establish a farm.

Pros sheep breeding

Any business, no matter in which industry a business is created, needs to think through the details of the plan, take into account all the costs and ways of making profit, that is, you need to draw up a business plan for breeding sheep for meat and for other purposes .

As mentioned earlier, sheep breeding is a developing niche in which the stage of revitalization is currently underway. This can be explained by several factors. For example, a sheep belongs to the category of unpretentious animals; minimal human intervention is required in keeping the sheep. In addition, sheep do not get sick so often, which positively affects the number of livestock.

Плюсы овцеводства

The advantages of sheep farming

It is also worth mentioning about nutrition, which is a significant costly part. Not only are these animals not used to sorting out food, they spend a lot of time in the pasture – you will have to pay only for renting a place if you don’t have one. Although we must not forget that animals still need to be fed so that their weight is maximum. For feeding use special feeds that can be purchased at veterinary stores or prepared independently.

It is important that a person does not need to purchase large quantities of cattle at once, you can start with a dozen or several dozen sheep.

Cons of sheep breeding

Despite the impressive list of advantages, there are, of course, disadvantages that cannot be said about when analyzing the industry of sheep breeding. At the moment, it is worth saying that the profitability of the industry is quite low, only about 15%, the same applies to profit.Many farmers abandon sheep breeding as soon as they encounter this problem.

These figures, although not so fast, are still increasing. Moreover, for maximum profitability, it is important to organize everything correctly and not to save on the main cost items, which involve the organization of keeping, feeding, cutting, slaughtering the animal. If everything is organized correctly, the profit and profit will be stable.

How to organize a pasture and a shepherd

As already mentioned, sheep spend more time on pasture, therefore pay due attention to finding a good place. Usually, the calculation of 1 hectare of pasture per individual is taken as the norm, this area is needed for one year. Thus, after an elementary multiplication of the livestock by the norm, you can get an approximate pasture area.

Организация пастбища

Pasture organization

As for the shepherd, there will not be any special buildings required, the premises should be as simple as possible. If a home sheep farm is located in a village or village, then an ordinary wooden barn or an old home farm will fit. You don’t even have to equip the shepherd with a heating system, since the sheep tolerates harsh winters quite well. If the winter is especially cold, then you can get by with an ordinary potbelly stove.

Features of pedigree sheep breeding

In miscalculations of a business plan, the most important condition for buying sheep and sheep should be taken into account. Based on the recommendations of experienced farmers, it is best to buy animals on proven farms where they will not sell a sick or non-pedigree individual and there will be all the conditions in order to check the animal’s health. It will cost more, but in the future it will save you from many problems.

In order not to encounter the problem of crossbreeding within a genus, it is best to cross individuals from different farms.

It is best to start with the most common in Russia, the breed is the Romanovsk sheep, which is of the meat type. Growing and raising sheep for meat as a business usually starts with this variety. You can also try to buy several individuals of Russian longhair, it also feels great in our latitudes, although its specialization is narrower: most often it is bred for milk and wool.

Methods of breeding sheep

With proper keeping and balanced nutrition, a sheep can live up to the age of 25 years, but the reproductive age does not last long: only about 8-9 years, although, of course, there are exceptions to the rules when it is possible to raise a mature animal to older.

What Regarding breeding methods, there are several:

  • Introductory breeding. It is also called blood.In Russia, many people prefer to raise sheep in this way, because it allows you to significantly improve the breed’s performance in a short time, and it will take a single cross, no more.
  • Zavodskoye, it is also called reproductive. It is used in cases where the animal does not show characteristics that are inherent in a particular breed. This usually happens when breeds are purchased that are not suitable for the current climate and weather conditions.
  • Sheep breeding as a business by the absorption method. It is used when you need to change the direction of the livestock. For example, to re-qualify coarse-haired sheep in fine-fleece or at least semi-fine-fleece ones. This method is called indigenous, since the breed changes radically.
  • Industrial method. It is used to produce young lamb meat. The animal is slaughtered at an early age, usually after it reaches the age of 8 months.
  • Variable method. Here, the fertilization of the female will occur alternately by different males, which will belong to the same direction: meat or wool.


It is unlikely that one person will succeed cope with the economy on their own. Therefore, immediately after the direct purchase of livestock, you need to take care of the staff. Typically, 1 person per 300 sheep is taken for the calculation of labor. This applies only to shepherds.

In addition to the shepherd, the farm also needs a veterinarian, a milkmaid, and a man who is engaged in shearing, because you need to work correctly with the wool of sheep and sheep. In total, 4 specialties will be required at the home farm, in such conditions, sheep care will be sufficient.

Features of marketing products

As a result of sheep breeding, you can get meat, milk and wool. All three products are in demand, lamb wool is in second place in demand. It is worth saying right away that it is unlikely that it will be possible to establish the sale of milk in industrial quantities: its processing should be completed soon, which cannot be said about meat. Typically, lamb is readily bought by catering establishments, markets, bazaars, and also kebab houses, because mutton barbecue has a unique taste.

Мясо барана

Sheep meat

Of course, you should not count on the same demand as on pork or beef. But with the right sales organization, you can establish the smooth operation of the enterprise.

The financial side of the issue

As mentioned earlier, in the beginning you need to draw up a business plan, and only then start the purchase of equipment and feed. Below are the costly articles based on 300 goals. All amounts are given in rubles.

  • land lease – about 120 thousand rubles;
  • construction and equipment of the premises of the shepherd – about 110 thousand rubles.;
  • the annual salary of workers – about 500 thousand rubles;
  • unforeseen articles – about 80 thousand rubles. per year.

After adding up all the amounts, we get about 810 thousand rubles. It is this amount that is needed to start a business on sheep and sheep.

Now we turn to the description of the revenue side. Revenues will consist of:

  • Sales of live weight sheep. If you sell about 100 individuals a year, then at the cost of one animal about 5 thousand rubles, you can gain about 500 thousand rubles. per year.
  • Sale of fleece, that is, sheep’s wool – about 150 thousand rubles. in year. This also includes the sale of leather for further processing.
  • Sale of sheep carcasses. Here, the amount will consist of the number of carcasses (about 50 goals) multiplied by 100 rubles. for 1 kg. On average, about 500 thousand rubles come out.

As a result, for 1 year of sheep farming the income is about 1 million 150 thousand rubles. Moreover, if you subtract costs from this amount, all initial investments will pay off in 1-1.5 years.

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It is worth saying that all figures are approximate, they can change to a smaller or larger side, depending on various reasons. Also, much will depend on the specifics of the region in which the business is conducted. For example, raising sheep in southern Russia is less costly. If you compare these figures with the average for other sectors of livestock, this is a pretty good indicator. Thus, you can succeed in sheep farming, because keeping a sheep farm is profitable.

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Anna Evans

Author ✓ Farmer

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