Should you start raising meat rabbits for profit?
While earning huge profits from rabbit meat is generally not in the cards, that doesn’t mean that you can’t live comfortably off the profits and the work is certainly not very hard.
At the moment there is an incredibly high demand for rabbit meat and not nearly enough suppliers. More and more restaurants are adding it to their menus in an attempt to be more European, many supermarkets in America carry rabbit meat and Carnival Cruise Lines has been a large buyer of rabbit meat in the past. Hurricane Katrina put a damper on some of Carnival Cruise Lines’ purchasing power which forced many breeders out of business when demand suddenly dropped off, but there is still meat to be sold. Those willing to get a USDA certification will probably find themselves with more business than they can handle.
So with all this demand, why is it so hard to become rich off rabbits? One issue is that rabbit meat sales are often cyclical. And in the summer months, rabbits slow down their production and growth. This causes many breeders to try to increase their meat production by adding more breeding rabbits in the summer. But then they forget to decrease production or plan incorrectly and find themselves with way too much meat later in the year.
If you are hoping to become a millionaire off rabbits, try entering the market for rabbit serum, or blood which has been cleaned. It’s the animal blood closest to humans and therefore highly in demand for cancer research. It can be sold for $15,000-20,000 a gallon. But finding your way onto the list of biomedical sellers is not easy.
In Alabama, there is a lot of initiative and encouragement being shown for rabbit meat breeders. The state has been allocating money to provide technical and marketing support. This has led to formation of Alabama A+ Marketing; coordination of better prices on rabbit feed; centralized pickup points to ship the product to the Kentucky processor; and even persuading a Birmingham culinary school and fine restaurants to develop more rabbit dishes.