Rabbit Farming in Kenya – What You Need To Know


Rabbit farming has taken the Kenyan market by storm over the last few years; but like with any other upcoming business idea in Kenya, farmers are encountering a couple of challenges. Due to that, Kuza Biashara did some research on this agri-business opportunity. We were able to put down a short informative article to help young farmers (as well as buyers) who want to venture into rabbit farming in Kenya.

Types of Breeds That Do Well in Kenya

According to the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI), there are three (3) breeds of rabbits in Kenya; California, Chinchilla and New Zealand white. Flemish Giant is also quite popular around the country. Chinchilla is a grey-brown breed and is preferred because it has a large mature weight.

Most rabbits reach maturity in 5 months and achieve slaughter weight in just 3 months. Rabbit’s reproduce 3 to 4 times annually.

New Zealand and Californian are popular because they can be relied on for fur as well as meat. Chinchilla is preferred for meat because of its large mature size.

Benefits of Rabbit Keeping

Apart from the high turnover that is characteristic of this field of business, rabbits have numerous benefits. First, their meat is categorized as white meat. Rabbit meat is white, high quality, easily digestible and low fat. It has low cholesterol and high protein compared to most other meat. Rabbit meat provides low calories per kilogram of meat consumed than pork, turkey, chicken or beef.

Rabbit urine is used both as an insecticide and fertilizer. Their skin and fur can be used in the manufacture of fashion items. Rabbit droppings serve as tilapia food for those with ponds. A 20kg sack goes for between Ksh50 and Ksh200. Some local agrochemical companies have shown interest on Rabbit droppings but inadequate supply has always proved to be a challenge.

{Rabbit meat has 20.8% protein as compared to lamb meat which contains 15.7% and beef 16.3%}

Kuza Biashara on Rabbit Farming

Rabbit Feeds (Pellets)

Cost of Rabbit Farming

The cost of rearing rabbits depends on the type of system you use. Feeds are a major cost because rabbits consume about 25 grams of pellets per day. This translates to 2.25Kg in 90 days. On average 2Kg of rabbit pellets cost between Ksh90 and Ksh150. These feeds can be easily found in local agrovet shops and supermarkets.

Alternatively, you can feed them on vegetables. An average rabbit feeds on 2 leaves of sukumawiki (Kales) per day. You may also feed them on carrots. Aside from the cost of feeds, you should also add other costs as follows:

  • Cost of labour (constructing rabbit hutches)
  • Depreciation of hutches
  • Transport to the nearest rabbit market

Regions Where Rabbit Business Thrives

Rabbits can be kept in virtually any part of Kenya provided they are housed properly and protected from predators. The Ministry of Agriculture Livestock and Fisheries will be able to furnish you with specific information like – where to source the right species and so forth. Kindly visit your nearest ministry offices to inquire more on requirements for starting up rabbit farming in your area.

Where to find Market

Finding market for Rabbits has proven to be a challenge to most farmers in Kenya. To some extent this can be blamed on poor flow of information from the sellers to the buyers (and vice versa).

Rabbit farming in Kenya

Rabbit meat on display: Courtesy of Business Daily

Normally, there are two different avenues that you can use to sell your Rabbit products. First, you can sell through local companies that have established themselves as an authority in this line of business. Rabbit Republic is one such company. Benida Foods is yet another example of a company that deals with rabbit marketing in Kenya.

The second way to market your rabbits is through direct marketing. In that case you would have to visit big hotels and research centers looking for market. You may also want to approach supermarkets in your area and request them to sell your stock.

To market rabbits you need certification by the Veterinary services department (MALF), Kenya Bureau of Statistics.

One place to find market for rabbit meat is at local hotels. Most 5 star hotels are looking for consistent suppliers. You only need to visit several of these hotels in your area and talk to them about your farming business. Rabbit meat retails at a price range of Ksh500 and Ksh700 per kilogram.

Data from the Export Promotion Council (EPC) shows that demand for rabbit meat globally has not been fulfilled. For this reason, farmers with less than 100 rabbits are being urged to form groups at the county level in order to strategize on how best to supply other countries.

Where to find Halal Rabbit Meat

Rabbit farming in Kenya

Delicious Rabbit Meat

Only a few suppliers are selling Halal certified rabbit meat. More information on this can be obtained from the Kenya Bureau of Halal Certification (KBHC).“If you are looking for Halal Rabbit products, we would recommend buying live rabbits and getting Halal butcher to slaughter them for you. Alternatively, you can visit your local supermarket and look for products with the Halal mark of quality.” Recommends Josephine (a local rabbit farmer who is based in Ruai, Nairobi).


There are many factors to consider before you venture into Rabbit farming in Kenya. Kuza Biashara advises you to carry out thorough research before you rush to invest in any kind of business. You are welcomed to join our Facebook community where you can interact with 100,000+ like-minded entrepreneurs on this and other interesting topics.

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