4 Considerations When Pricing Hatching Eggs

Don’t undercut yourself when starting a business to sell hatching eggs.

by Sue Weaver
PHOTO: K W/Flickr

So you want to sell hatching eggs but don’t know what to charge? It’s tricky because there isn’t a lot of competition to look at. You can’t ask too much, but you don’t want to give them away. Here are four important points to consider.

1. Breed

Rare breeds are more profitable than more common chickens, no matter if you’re selling them as adults, chicks or eggs. It will cost you more upfront to set up with a rare breed, but the payoff is worth it. Consider the Ayam Cemani, an all-black chicken breed from Indonesia. American breeders are charging $25 to $50 per egg for this rare breed. A few high-standard Ayam Cemani can easily generate more income than a henhouse full of Rhode Island Reds.

2. Expertise

Your eggs will be more in demand if you show ribbon-winning chickens. People are more willing to shell out the bucks for known quality than eggs from a backyard breeder. Join your breed club, study the breed standard, and work toward produce birds that are fine specimens of their breed. When your breeding stock is ready, join and interact with online breed groups, posting pictures of your chickens and advertising your hatching eggs for sale.

3. Cost

Keep good records so you know what goes into producing your eggs. Factor in the cost of parent stock, feed and bedding, showing expenses, supplementary winter heating if you use it, advertising if you pay for it, packaging materials, and your time.

4. Guarantees

Hatching eggs are usually sold without guarantee because so many variables are out of your control when shipping eggs by mail and failures can occur during incubation. Some sellers, however, offer limited guarantees, and this can be a strong selling point. Typically, a seller might guarantee that a set number of eggs will arrive intact or that a certain percentage will hatch. Guarantees usually stipulate that the seller will ship replacement eggs, but the buyer covers all shipping costs. If you guarantee your eggs, price accordingly.

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