Tip No.4: How to Make a Steady Income From Snail Farming
Snail farming (also known as heliciculture) is another lucrative business that is steadily growing as the commodity is in high demand across the country and beyond all thanks to the nutritious value the gastropod carry.
Snail farming is not a new concept in the agribusiness. Humans consume snail meat mainly because of its nutritional values. Snail is rich in protein and iron, low in fat and cholesterol, contains almost all the amino acid needed for the human body including Omega 3, no wonder this meat is always prescribed by medical experts to patients with failing health conditions.
Starting a snail farm for commercial purpose does not require a vast space of land but your choice of location is pertinent. Snails are best kept in cool area with leafy vegetables free of insects and pests.
The soil structure should be light; this helps the snail in egg laying and easy movement. Proper drainage system is important to allow for easy flow of water after rain. This will help to avoid stagnant waters around the farm.
For maximum result, it is advised to breed snails of the same species. There are different species of snails, and not all are suitable for snail farming meaning that some are more economical than the other. Also, not all specie of snail is consumed as meat. To have an active farm that will give the farmer optimum profit, I recommended you farm the Archachatina Marginata (Giant West Africa Snail) and achatina achatina (Giant Africa Snail). They are edible land snails that grow big and fast if supplied with enough food and housed in a professionally constructed snailery. There slime or muccus is also used by the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. While the Achatina snails lay small eggs 4-10 mm in diameter, in batches of 20 – 400, the Archachatina snails lay larger eggs 12-20 mm in diameter, in batches of 6 – 20.
Snails are generally vegetarians and accept most food types like fruits, leaves, flowers, tubers and any high calcium foods. Snails eat solid food by rasping it away with their radula. Feeding activity depends on the weather, and snails may not necessarily feed every day.
Just make sure the environment is tidy. Chop and drop the food for the snails in small quantity or make sizable bits of food and drop in the snailery giving spaces to avoid the snails clogging. To give the snail water, you just need to dampen/sprinkle the snailery or food with rain water or any ordinary water that is not treated with chlorine.
Modern snail farmers provide their snail with nutrition rich foods that help to enhance the growth rate and size.
Getting buyers for your mature snails are never a problem; you just need to make the right contact while starting out. Depending on the scale you are operating, you just need to talk to few restaurants that specialize in snail meat, vendors that sell snails in the market, hotels and now most lucrative is selling to exporters. Some businesses might even order for snails even before maturity if you are good in growing snails to big sizes