How do I start my own small hatchery business from my home?

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That's a complex question. If you would like to turn your home or farm into a hatchery and begin selling baby chicks to other people, we'd first recommend getting NPIP certification so you can be sure that your chicks are free of the worst diseases passed from hen to chick through the egg.

We also recommend learning about biosecurity, so you can be sure your breeding flocks will remain clean. You want to be assured you're selling healthy birds to your customers.

The next thing you might consider is to join one or more breed clubs for the breeds you'd like to sell, so you can learn about best practices in choosing your breeding stock.

What is actually required to start a farm business will depend on your state and sometimes your local authorities. So next, you'd want to research to find out what it would take to start a small farm business in your state, and if there are any special regulations related to selling or raising poultry or livestock. We'd recommend contacting your state vet or the USDA Veterinary Services offices (toll-free at 1-866-536-7593) for more information and advice, as well as the US Small Business Administration .

Let's get down to business.

Once you've done all your research, you can determine if becoming a small hatchery is something you are able to do.