Chicken roasting as a segment of the agricultural value chain has been one of the means of earning a living for a significant number of people, thus providing employment opportunities to many. This is aside providing satisfaction to the populace.
In Kano, where the business gets much attraction due to large population, almost every street is flooded with suya (Hausa name for roasted meat) spots, where chickens are processed in different forms. This generates huge revenue.
Daily Trust on Sunday gathered that from poultry farms to markets and roasting points, many people rely on chickens to earn a living – poultry owners, marketers who sell to processors, etc.
When our correspondent visited one of the popular chicken suya spots along Katsina road in Kano, White House Ibrahim Suya Spot, it was found that youths and elderly people earn legitimate living through the business.
The owner of the suya spot, Alhaji Ibrahim Iliyasu Mai Kaza, said he started with four chickens 18 years ago when his father gave him N4,500, but he now has two more branches and has employed 22 people.
He said that presently, they roast 80 to 100 chickens, and 80 per cent are sold on a daily basis, adding that they buy most of the chickens from women in their matrimonial homes.
“When my father gave me N4,500 to start the business, I remember I got only four chickens. I bought my drum, put sand in it and started. Only one person usually supported me. It wasn’t easy at all, but today, this is where we are in the business. I have customers and capital. I opened two more branches and 22 people are living under me.
“In this business I have raised three boys who are now independent and own their own places. One is in Katsina, another one in Bichi and the other in Sabongari. They all built their houses and are happily married.
“I have a house big enough to look like that of a commissioner. I have a car, two wives and six children. In fact, some of my boys here have their own houses. I got all these from chicken roasting,” he said.
He said the business had made many people wealthy and provided business opportunities to others.
Mai Kaza said they normally bought each chicken between N1,500 and N2,000 and sell to make profit.
“The business is paying. Every day we sell from 40 to 50, but during weekends we sell more than that because of weddings and other events.
“We also attach few things to the business. For example, we sell gizzard, tea, noodles and drinks, which also generate more profit for us.
“You see, it is a big industry the government is supposed to consider and give support to. Some of the married women who operate poultries at home rear up to 300 chickens, and within six weeks we buy from them. But with the present hike in the price of feeds, some of them have given up and are not doing nothing now,” he said.
He said the economic crisis rocking the country had affected them seriously as the prices of chicks and feed are soars, which also led to the increase in the price of roasted chicken. “Few years ago, we bought chickens at N700, but now, the smallest is N1,500,” he added.
He said that to save the sector from collapsing, government should establish hatchery companies in Kano and a company that would produce poultry feed.
“Many people are relying on poultry – some sell the heads and legs, some the intestines, some the main chicken and some even the feather. So, I think the government should consider the number of people relying on it.
“We have done our part and made it in this business. We employed many who now employ others,” he said.
Ibrahim hopes to own a building dedicated for chicken roasting and engage other youths to become independent. He pays rent in all his shops.
“I want to expand the business and modernise it so that I can generate more income. I also want to open branches in big states like Abuja and Kaduna so that it will be a big house and company of chicken roasting that provides employment to hundreds of people in the country,” he said.