Ostrich Farming

Ostrich farming is getting great importance now a day. In old times the wild ostriches were used to be hunted in Africa to exploit their feathers. The early export of feathers took place in early nineteenth century and gave an importance to the ostrich farming. Certain suitable areas was selected to produce the feed and proper irrigation was done by the farmers to keep them self sufficient. The adequate means was adopted to develop the commercial farming of ostriches. During the start of last century the trade from ostrich feathers was the fourth largest income generation for South Africa, keeping in view the income from diamond, gold and wool. The people in that business got maximum advantages and were acknowledged across the various groups of society.

The growth in fashion industry across the world became the main cause of development in ostrich farming and the export of feathers got high demand rapidly. The usage of feathers on hats showed a great fashion style of that time, however, this fashion worked for a certain period. With the introduction of new designs and trends that style vanished with the course of time. The result was the decline in ostrich feather demand and a sudden collapse led this farming out of date.

After the world wars the people connected with ostrich farming turned to explore the leather market for their survival. They introduced ostrich leather as a luxury product and marketed in European areas, by first exporting their skins to United Kingdom for tanning and then producing different items of high standards. The market accepted this new trend and a huge market were established by the time. At that time a single co-operative system for marketing was made in early sixties and under that the farmers were bound to sell their birds to them enabling them to market the produce.

During that period the ostrich farming spread to other neighboring countries also and a demand for ostrich meat expanded its scope. The growing demand paved the way for commercial farming and today we find that meat is utilized 50%, skin40%and feathers 10%respectivly.This farming is making progress rapidly in modern world.  

Author; Umar Saleh.


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