How to start a butchery business in Kenya

How to start a butchery business in Kenya

Meat is something that is rarely missed in most of the dishes prepared in Kenyan households. As a result, selling meat is seen as a lucrative venture as there is a ready market.

But how do you go about this venture? How much capital do you need? Which equipment is required? Does a butchery business require a permit?

Worry not, this article will guide you with all the information you need to start a butchery business in Kenya.


The amount of capital required to start this venture depends on two things: the size and site of your butchery. These two factors will determine how much money you will require to get your butchery off the ground.

A small-sized butchery in a low-income area will cost you Ksh 25,000 – Ksh 50,000. A medium-sized butchery in a middle-income area will cost you Ksh 75,000 – Ksh 100,000 and a large butchery in a high-income area will cost you Ksh 200,000 and onwards.

Butcheries in high-income areas will require you to spend so much on décor and other intricacies to attract other customers. Whereas in low-income areas you only need the basic necessities.

You can get away with not having a freezer if you minimize your stock to just what customers demand. This is why the capital will differ according to its site and size.

Business permit

As with any other business, you will need a permit to operate a butchery. You will need to apply for a single business permit. The price varies depending on which county you reside in. To apply, go to The application will cost you Ksh 200.

Also, the permit differs on the number of employees you are planning to have. A medium trader business permit costs Ksh 10,000 and caters for 5-20 employees. A large trader business permit costs Ksh 20,000 and caters to 21-50 employees.

Apart from a single business permit, you will also need these other licenses:

  • Trading License: Valid for a year. It costs Ksh 10,000
  • Fire Safety and Clearance License: Valid for a year. It costs Ksh 3,000
  • Food Hygiene and Handling Certificate: Valid for 6 months. It costs Ksh 600


Where you install your butchery can make or break your business venture. Generally, you want your butchery to be situated in a busy, densely populated area.

Your butchery should be easy to see and walk to. The best places to set up your butchery should be in a residential area center or close to a supermarket, bus stop, market, or other areas that experience high pedestrian traffic.

The location should also be conversant with the type of meat you are selling. You cannot set up a pork butchery in an area where Muslims live because you will not make any sales. For a large butchery, you should be able to have ample parking space and clean surroundings to attract more customers.


To run a butchery, you will require basic equipment. This will range from a coat to a display counter. The following are the items you need to start a butchery:

  • Whitecoat
  • Display counter
  • Meat slicer
  • Bone saw machine
  • Bone saw blade
  • Meat mincer
  • Analog weighing scale
  • Butcher weighing scale
  • Steel sharpener
  • Meat saw
  • Meat cleaver
  • Stainless steel hook
  • Hanging scale
  • Freezer
  • Wrapping material

Depending on the market, the lowest amount all these tools should cost you is about Ksh 25,000. With the tools mentioned above, you will be able to operate a butchery efficiently.

Where to get a meat supply

Meat can be outsourced from a variety of places regardless of which county you are residing in. However, meat supplied by licensed slaughterhouses should be your first choice. This is because they’ve been vetted by the Health Ministry thus their meat has been inspected and is fit for sale and consumption.

If you are starting, you don’t need to stock a wide variety of meat, focus on beef and chicken, then grow to other varieties gradually. Also, if you are intending to open a butchery around a Muslim community, the slaughterhouse you get your meat from should have a Halal Certification.

The following are licensed slaughterhouses where you can get your meat:

  • City Market
  • Huruma slaughterhouse
  • Njiru slaughterhouse
  • Goldox slaughterhouse
  • Nanyuki slaughterhouse
  • Lomidat slaughterhouse

You should also know that the price of meat varies depending on its type. Beef is the cheapest whereas seafood is expensive.

To retain and keep your customers coming back, always get good quality meat, even if it means paying a little more for the supplies.

Don’t just sell hard meat, especially to those buying raw to cook for themselves. Mix with some soft ones too. If you follow these parameters, you will be able to start a profitable butchery business.

How to Price your Meat

The selling price of your meat depends on your location, size, and standard. If you’re a high-end butchery, you can expect to charge customers up to KES 2,000 per kg. Most butchery, however, price their meat per gram. You can also sell at different price points like KES 100, 200, 300, 500, 1,000 etc.

For most butchery owners, it’s all about value addition. You can sell your meat on-site as nyama choma, boiled or fried with rice, ugali, matoke, or other side dishes. This way, you can fetch better prices and sell more meat per day.


When all’s said and done, butchery business in Kenya is all about strategic location, being smart, and maintaining a high standard of hygiene.

Geoffrey Nevine — IT Services and IT Consulting

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