Backyard piggeries should sell pork through spaza shops

Backyard piggeries struggle with market access and this is a common challenge that I witness daily on various pig farming Facebook Groups where I’m a member.

Farmers are constantly looking for a market for their pigs that they’ve reared until slaughter weight.

The majority of backyard pig farmers are in townships and villages across the country. In these communities, there is a striving network of spaza shops. In other words, we’re the very market, that backyard pig farmers are struggling to access…how strange is that?

Spaza shops are owned by us and run by us…if not rented out to foreigners. However backyard pig farmers fail to capitalise on this opportunity within their reach…why exactly?


If I was one of the backyard pig farmers, I would target all spazas in my vicinity…say 1-10km radius.

In no particular order, for the purposes of highlighting the untapped opportunity, I would do the following:

  1. Approach these spaza shops.
  2. Create a spazas database (in the business world, owning the database is key, that is your heartbeat).
  3. Sell them my proposal of becoming their bulk pork distributor.
  4. Supply them with pork portions packaged in bulk at wholesale prices.
  5. My wholesale prices would enable them to add their own markup to make a profit.
  6. Would then slaughter all grower pigs at the abattoir.
  7. Buy a meat bandsaw to slice pork carcasses into portions or outsource the carcass cutting to my local butchery).
  8. Buy packing fomo trays or plastic bags to package my pork portions.
  9. Pack these pork portions into different size 600g and 1kg packs (10/12 per box)…to cater for different budgets.
  10. Would need a brand name for my new product (pork portions) to have a business identity…something catchy and brandable, NONGOMA PORK since I am based in Nongoma.


  1. A new revenue stream for spaza shops would be added to their portfolio…beyond selling chicken and beef.
  2. Establish my own market where I could have total control of the prices and not rely on third parties where I’m a price taker.
  3. Spaza shops as resellers could become repeat clients, as I supply them with stock on a regular basis.
  4. As a distributor of pork portions, there would be room for growth to service other areas.
  5. If I don’t have enough stock, I could buy pigs from other farmers.
  6. Since I would be selling to resellers, my customer base would be minimal, compared to selling to end consumers.
  7. I would move bulk pork but to few customers.

The above approach would work wonders if done as a group of backyard piggeries in the same area, sharing resources and expertise in the process for the benefit of the group.

Imagine if 5 backyard piggeries in Nongoma established NONGOMA PORK and supplied pork to all spazas in Nongoma. Or rented out spaza outlets and exclusively sold NONGOMA PORK products…pig production would grow without stressing about the market.

As a group of pig farmers…this would go beyond market access, but cutting costs on feed would be logical, training and any related mutual benefit for the group.

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By Mohale Muzi

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