Meat shop multi-million business venture, by Agbaji Chinedu

Agbaji Chinedu.

Today’s Agribusiness

The reformation of the agriculture sector is not limited to staple crops as livestock farmers and meat dealers in Nigeria are set to smile as meat processing becomes the next development target for investors.

With a population of over 180 million people and a growth rate of 3-4 per cent, there is definitely a huge market for meat consumption in Nigeria which gives players in the industry and investors a good playing field.

You can prepare meat in different ways for eating, either fried, roasted or dried in Suya form (barbeque). Whichever form it is prepared; meat remains a delicacy which demands can never be met. There are people who may complain that the hygiene level of abattoirs is not good enough, as a result, private abattoirs are coming up, this a different business altogether.

The demand for meat is aside from the fact that the demand for premium quality is in high demands by large retail stores such as SPAR, Shoprite, Ebeano, Supper Stores among many others which prefer to buy only the processed meat. This, they say, is to ensure cleaner and easier packaging.

Here are the essential first nine steps on how you can start your meat shop business effectively and quickly.

Creating your brand’s identity and designing a logo: Even though it’s quite a fun process, you should take it as seriously as possible. Your future logo must represent one main thing – the values of your brand. There might be too many meat stores in your area, and how are you going to establish the brand’s voice without having a tone? Logos influence customers – according to statistics, some of them are even ready to buy products just because of the outstanding logo. So the right design choices establishing the new brand with a commercial appeal would be your first key to opening a successful meat store.

Writing a Business Plan: When you come up with a thoughtful business plan, you get one of the most useful tools helping prioritize goals, map out strategies to reaching these goals and see some potential problems ahead. You need clear directions. Your aim is to identify a five-year (or three-year) period where the first year prepares the right trajectory for the whole enterprise.

Thus your plan for the first year must be very detailed whereas the other parts are meant to describe specific regions. Plans usually range from 30 to 60 pages in length and include financial information, outline pricing, thorough market analysis, competitive analysis, description of products or services, your sales strategy and different forecasts for the future. Also, you have to identify the risks and problems expected during development. All in all, it’s your meat shop in a nutshell.

Business Registration: Registering your entity, first you need to learn about your registration requirements. Any meat shop is regulated by local government law, so the process really depends on the state where you plan to venture out. In any case, you can go through the process on your own – register a trade name, a legal identity, register your business with the state revenue office, get licenses and permits.

An alternative option would be to find a reliable consulting company providing registration services – in other words, they set up everything for you and reduce entry time so that you could concentrate on other things instead.

Meat processing has to meet several regulations. Your meat shop must maintain proper temperatures, have good sanitation, air conditioning systems, protection from foreign elements. Guidelines always imply safe retailing of meat products where healthy employees are included while pests are excluded.

Location: Choosing A Place The better place you find, the more profit you will generate. Entrepreneurs often look for decent premises in the first row. The location chosen plays an integral part, your meat shop has to be located within a large residential area where you can attract a lot of potential buyers.

On the other hand, you shouldn’t go to big shopping areas for a few reasons. To begin with, there is no such place at no extra cost, so you’d rather save this money for later. Think about launching a few more outlets, too, but only if you were offered an affordable rent or you found larger premises to expand the business. Remember that additional product categories will attract a broader range of customers and also help achieve higher profitability.

Purchasing Equipment: There is a lot of things in a meat shop, but in the first instance you’ll need a relatively basic set of equipment. A reliable refrigeration system is what, to begin with as well as a couple of cold cabinets to display products to your customers. Professional meat slicers come to ensure cutting precision, especially if you want to offer a wide range of cuts. Electric meat grinders are an excellent choice to make mince, sausages and more.

Also think about commercial scales, knives, saws and cleavers. This set will be quite enough until you get it really big, but as long as your butcher shop develops, so does your equipment.

Employing Your Staff: If you don’t plan to sell products yourself, you’ll need a seller. An experienced salesperson is a preferable option because they are always able to layout products according to fundamental merchandising principles, turn your meat cuts into something attractive to clients or advise buyers on any matters.

Good sellers won’t let your meat ‘collect dust on the shelf’ for a long time and will help you generate high sales. And if you happen to encourage your sellers with occasional bonuses or extras, that would be just perfect.

A butcher is the next influential figure in your butcher store. You shouldn’t work with some lame-looking butcher without any experience in butchering just to save money.

In professionals we trust. When an amateur butcher processes meat, it sadly leads to many problems like ‘understructure’ or ugly-looking cuts that hardly would anyone like to buy. If you cannot hire a professional butcher, try to negotiate with your suppliers so that they deliver already finished cuts. Some other staff members can help you out, too.

For example, a good chef may cook excellent pieces of meat or mince that allow selling a mixed assortment of production. Great for lazy customers, great for your profit. A couple of part-time janitors will help you keep the place clean and nice. Finally, you might hire an administrative workforce to manage papers and documents, but when you are only developing, you can do that yourself for a while.

Going Shopping For Some Meat When working with meat suppliers, always look for the best grade and storage. If you want to be sure that you buy what you need from meat storage, you should look into how this meat is stored.

Simple as it is. Monitor different suppliers that operate only with the highest standards – it is better to have a few options in advance just in case of an emergency. In the first instance, you need to source two or three local farms which will be able to deliver products to you on a regular basis, two to three times a week.

Buying large amounts of meat may seem more advantageous in terms of profit, but don’t forget that chilled meat looks fresh for 3-4 days only. The range of your products is unlikely to exceed 20-25 positions while you are just on the runway to big butchering. Go for the most popular entries like beef, pork, lamb, chicken, turkey, duck. Then add a group of semi-finished products like sausages, mince, chops and so on.

Apart from hit picks, you can offer Halal and Kosher meat in your shop. You may also try to sell exotic cuts if you operate in a big city. Exotic meat will not make your sales grow substantially, but it will build your reputation as a universal retailer that can find anything and everything.

Marketing and Advertising: You can begin advertising right a little before the grand opening. Hang an attention-grabbing sign above the entrance. Sidewalk signs catch attention, too. Besides, they are portable, so you will be able to relocate the frame to maximize your outdoor advertising.

It is not necessary to buy TV or radio advertising, because it’s the 21st century. This sort of advertising proves to be ineffective in comparison to the Internet. So explore the online regions – social media like Twitter and Facebook, blogging platforms, forums. If you have a large butcher shop, then you can try to sponsor culinary bloggers on YouTube or Instagram.

It really depends on how much buzz you aim to generate around your business. Don’t forget to register your store on Google My Business. 9. Growing Your Business + e-Commerce Additionally, you can collaborate with cafes or restaurants nearby – get in touch with the owners, discuss possibilities, offer your production to them.

It is necessary to consider the idea of opening more sales outlets to increase your income or even create a franchise. A few more stores around your city would do good. If you want to sell premium products or expose your butchering to a bigger range of customers, you can run an online butcher store. It has become very popular in recent years.

Risks, Errors, Nuances Poor-looking design: If your butcher shop looks like a third-class junk with poor aesthetics, you can damage your image. Wise interior designing draws customers, bad choices lead to a decline in profitability.

Too expensive equipment: It is not always necessary to buy expensive showcase windows, luxurious machinery or high-priced gear because it plays an important role only when your butcher store caters for elite buyers. Besides, you can buy used equipment with good technical features for a reasonable price instead of wasting money for nothing.

Poor hygiene, smells, dirt: Everything has to smell right, feel right and look right. No dirt is acceptable at a place such as a butcher shop. Untidy sellers at the counter can put off people as well, even though they are super sellers. Lack of advertising. Many entrepreneurs neglect marketing. They simply open their shop and wait for buyers. It’s not that you open the doors and then, all of a sudden, throngs of customers are running into the place.

A meat shop is one of the best business choices for those who want to be entrepreneurs. It is simple, the demand is stable, and the profit margin is better than most retail outlets.

You can contact us for well-prepared feasibility studies on this business which will help you as you invest in this business venture now or in future.


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