Three years ago, Geoffrey Beau Kauta decided to test the waters -or more specifically, the pond as he attempted duck farming.
This new venture was driven by the news to farm more on limited space and with limited resources.
Already a livestock farmer of the hardy Nguni cattle, a breed many in his community would hardly consider for specialisation, Kauta took his manner of thinking a notch up and embraced duck farming.
Although he holds ducks on his farm in the Omaheke region, his main business lies in the eggs produced by these ducks and not necessarily in the ducks themselves.
Referring to himself as a serial entrepreneur, Kauta’s newfound farming mode produced some states from curious onlookers over the years. Today, Kauta’s duck farming has blossomed into a thriving business, serving clients from far and near.
His secret to the rise of the business? Persistence, innovation and determination, he says.
Also, the relatively cheap mode of farming provided by ducks made the enterprise a thriving one.
“Duck farming is a lot less expensive per square metre produce than chicken farming as ducks are less susceptible to diseases and produce bigger eggs than chicken eggs.
“ Secondly, duck eggs are more nutritious and fulfilling. Also it’s a market where it’s not crowded,” he said.
Kauta said one of the greatest attributes of the most successful entrepreneurs is to be an innovator and not a follower – something he embraces fully.
He says he has managed to get optimum results from his duck eggs production business and regards it to be more profitable than chicken egg production.
“Each duck lays one egg per day just like chicken, however, size matters as ducks almost eat the same as chicken,” he said.
The supplementary income from the ducks comes in many forms, Kauta noted. As ducks spend most of their time in the water, such water is then used for irrigation.
Currently, the family uses the water on their lucerne as both fertilisers and irrigation. The duck feathers are also used in pillow and duvet factories, and are sought after, Kauta said.
He is of the opinion that it is vital to find a different form of farming or business that is not widely practised, nurture it and grow it into a fully fledged enterprise.
That way, he noted, the farmer would enrich his profits and knowledge on various farming techniques available.
“In farming, it can never be business as usual. One needs to constantly be on your feet as you search for bigger and better ways of farming. “The traditional farming mode is something of the past. We are nowadays called upon to be creative and innovative in our approaches,” he noted.