The saying goes the way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time. It’s true.
From our pilot the process of building a tilapia fish farming business can now begin. Cost of production will remain critical to keep on top of – there is plenty of competition from imported product that will have to be faced and dealt with accordingly.
This will take some time. It means that a fish farm is unlikely to reach break even within a year or two. The pricing point is such that imported product means you have to sell direct to the consumer – wholesale of your fish at R20/kg to a distributor is not yet possible, should you wish to turn a profit. We require economies of scale to achieve this that simply do not yet exist in South Africa, and thanks to government ineptitude are highly unlikely to ever exist.
Happily though you can build a truly substantial business by running the ‘egg to plate’ philosophy.
What is it going to take to achieve this?
- Some cash (around R200k)
- Some learning (you)
- Some time (a couple of production cycles, say 12 to 18 months)
- Some effort (selling your fish)
It all starts with the product. In this case the fish.
You HAVE to know what fish your market wants, and what price they are prepared to pay for it. Demand is happily not something you need to worry about overly much because if you have the price and the fish right the market is extremely large.
If you’re unsure of selling your fish, take it from those that have been there. Come and buy some fish from us, and sell those fish into your market (even if you make a loss). This is the cheapest way to give yourself a deep and meaningful insight into your market.
Without knowing exactly who is going to buy your fish and at what price you have no chance whatsoever of being successful. And without actually getting the cash for the fish trust us, it’s all just talk… Save yourself the disappointment and establish an actual real world price that you can then work with.