The chickens are fattening up in preparation for Chinese New Year. A high percentage of these ayam kampung asli/AKA turns out to be roosters so they have to be culled for meat, as my focus is for sale of chicken eggs.
Selling for limited time only @ RM 28/kg (Cleaned/processed inclusive of everything except for head and intestines. Extra RM 1.50/bird for cutting services), their superior taste in terms of sweetness is unrivalled when made into herbal soup or steamed with herbs. Sales have been good and I’m afraid I can’t keep up with the demand, while plans are under way to replenish for the next generation for both AKA and AKK.
Although having an unfavourable meat to bones ratio and priced on the higher side, there are still some customers who selectively hunt for it. I have a super happy and satisfied aunty who positively compared my chickens to those she’s had in her bygone years (her mum’s 92 years old). She spoke of how her backyard chickens roamed free and feed on scraps and left to care for their own. I’m doing pretty much the same but on a “bigger backyard” scale, though not amounting to commercial level.
But that’s the thing; the exclusivity and “value” lie in their raising methods and living condition. It is safe to assume that most of the chickens in the market are fed with commercial feed. The chickens at the farm on the other hand are not only without commercial pellets; they are corn-free and soy-free.
At 1 to 1.4 kg per bird in 9 months, it’s a “failure” by commercial standards. The apparent inadequacy in growth performance and ROI serves as my baseline given the difficult conditions experienced (lack of labour, feed issues and an amateurish approach to fine tuning processes along the way). In fact, I have to say there are no failures, only lessons learnt to improve my chances for success in the future.