Keggfarm’s work admired

23-05-2007 | | |

Poultry corporate Keggfarms has returned to rural backyards as part of its rural poultry programme.

Keggfarms wants to keep benefits of poultry within the countryside while making it more profitable for the housewives who rear the chickens. They achieved this by genetically breeding high-yielding chickens, called kuroilers, and supplying them to the village women.
Keggfarms founder, Vinod Kapur, says his firm’s experiment with rural poultry is now nearing a decade and he has no regrets. “We gave the women genetically-bred chicken from seeds made in the laboratories of Keggfarms. They were less prone to diseases, stronger, gave more eggs and could be used for eggs and meat.”
The strategy
Keggfarms appointed 2,000 vendors to sell chickens. These vendors got Keggfarms special kuroilers from yet another 2,000 mother units spread across seven states.
The mother units are independent, self-funded micro enterprises. The vendors buy from the units and sell them in the villages. The housewives buy them and sell the eggs as well as the chicken itself for meat in village markets. The women earn Rs 300 – 400 (€5.5 – 7.3) a month.
There is no sophisticated system to market products or any intervention to multiply the profits of the women by drawing them into food processing or other such channels.
“The rural poor were out of the poultry revolution, now they are part of it. At least 800,000 people are part of it,” Kapur says.
Keggfarms, which started in Kolkata in the late 1990s, has added 100-odd km to its reach every year, and in 2006 sold 18 million chicks.
Kapur’s work has been recognised Harvard Business School as a development model. The National Dairy Development Board is documenting the Keggfarms model as one for sustainable rural development.
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