Thinking about it, need some tips from the people that actually know.

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Shah James

New member
May 18, 2024
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United States
Hey fellas, I've been researching the meat rabbit trade for a few weeks now and although my numbers come back promising- I've gotten only doubt from everyone around me. So, I live in the midwest, that means (for all of this correct me if I'm wrong, please) feeding the rabbits will be cheaper than most other places. I've been to multiple websites for locations in my state and the surrounding states that sell rabbit meat for around $40 per rabbit. I've done a lot of research, and I feel like it isn't unreasonable to take advantage of the growing market by selling either to a butcher shop/meat processor for like $10-16 per rabbit (2 months old), or a local restaurant as a specialty for an upcharge (to compensate for butcher price, as I'd likely pay a butcher/meat processor to process them for me and have proper inspections). There's multiple places I can source the first breeders locally, so getting it started wouldn't be an issue, the only thing is if absolutely no one will do business with me. I'd be offering terms close to $16 per rabbit, and exporting around 100 rabbits per 2-3 months at first, so with this info what do you fine people think? I would love to pursue this if it can be profitable, and I feel like the opportunity is there (there's two small Italian restaurants near me and neither have rabbit for example, plus like 3 meat processors and a few other local restaurants), but I don't want to waste my time if there's no hope for any business. If that's the case I'll probably just raise a few for my own freezer. Thanks fellas.
Start by raising some for your freezer, new animals take time to learn.
Start asking around for people interested in a source of rabbit meat and if the processors actually do rabbits at all. Some may be interested, but there may not be a market for them to sell to. Rabbit i.e. bunny is fluffy pet not food for many people, for the ones that do eat them they may decide to raise their own.
So research your potential local market while you square away what you need for your own freezer.
Agree with @tambayo.

We have a single local processor who will dress rabbits professionally.

If you produce a few litters for your own freezer and feel confident in your profitability numbers and rabbit raising skills, then I would take a few litters to a processor and have them dispatched and wrapped in a professional facility. Then offer your proposed local market samples in the form of 1-2 rabbits, and see if they are happy with the product and will commit to buying stock, then you will need to be ready to ramp up quickly and meet demand consistently, in the event you have interest.