How to Start a Feed Store

Opening a feed store can be an interesting business venture. You get to supply basic needs of farm raisers, pet owners, breeders and a lot more. It’s a business that supports an already captured market. If that interests you, this business guideline will help establish your own feed store.

One of the best ways to learn a lot about different feeds is to actually work in a feed store.

Know different types of feeds

There are several types of feeds. Some are branded while some are not like Alpo which is a dog feed brand. Some feeds have added vitamin fortification like the ones owners buy for chickens and pigs.

There are specific feeds for parrots, guinea pigs, hamsters as well for rabbits. If you work long enough in a feed store you will recognize which feed goes to which animal easily. While working in a feed store is the optimum plan, you can also do a lot of reading to compensate your lack of experience. At the end, if you want to be good at what you want to become, you have to do your homework.

Find a supplier who can supply a number of feeds

Look for a supplier you can trust and do business with for a length of a period. Partner with a supplier who sympathizes with you and your business needs as you open your new business venture. Make sure they carry a variety of product lines. Ask if they offer consignment deals to lower down your inventory overhead and risk. Check that they deliver timely and supply good quality feeds. Here’s a tip. On top of your feed products, find additional products you can sell together with your feeds. Think about it.

Put together a feed store financial plan for your business

Calculate the expenses you expect to make as you begin your business. Make a rough draft and write them down so you can organize your thoughts. Expect to have rental overhead, inventory expenses for your feeds, and you probably would need a budget for utilities and renovation as well. Know that there are also expenses for your business licensing and sales tax permits. With all these expenses, calculate the amount of sales you would need to cover your expenses, pay whatever debts you may have incurred and become profitable too. If doing this process is hazy and difficult for you, hire an accountant to help you with the details. Ask him to help you develop a financial strategy for your business.

Get a location that is easily accessible

Find a feed store location that is not only easily accessible by your clients but that it also has adequate space for your feed inventories. Consult with a real estate agent. Ask for a list of possible locations that can work for your type of business. Explore each recommendation and pick 2 or 3 locations that interest you. While you are contemplating which one, search the newspaper ad, the web or ask friends for suggestions. Exhaust all possibilities before narrowing your choice to one.


  • Patricia said on April 24, 2009
    I live in the country but not far from the main city. there is a high demand for alfalfa and animal feed & supplies. Most of my neighbors own farm animal. the nearest feed store is 6 miles away. I think i can start a small feed store, but would also like to sell snacks and drinks for my customers. can the two be sold together?
  • Cristina beginner adviser said on April 24, 2009
    @PAtricia, It is absolutely fine, you can sell food and beverages in your feed store but the terms defers from state to state. Licenses are required so you can opt for number of vending machines that you want to keep towards food and beverages, there is a license fee per vending machine per year. It would been a different case if you would have planned for a grocery store. Contact your city clark for more information and permits.

    Towing Business Adviser

  • Annette said on June 22, 2009
    What is the estimated investment amount to open a feed and tackle store?
  • Vicky Dove said on July 21, 2009
    We live in a rural area where our closest feed store recently closed. (Closest being 10-12 miles away.) Now I have a 30-45 min drive to pick up feed. I'm considering running a feed store out of our barn. How much inventory would you recommend starting with? Thank You.
  • John Paul (D&J Pawn shop) said on September 19, 2009
    I just added feed, seed, fertilizer to my business this year. A 5 ton order of feed will cost you $2000-$2800. Don't know where you are located but if your in the southeast Check with Southern States. they carry it all.
  • denisedean said on September 21, 2009
    I am opening a feed store with little to no experience and would like to take some classes and get some information
  • sandra eggers said on November 2, 2009
    I have no knowledge of feed for larger animals. I know a good bit about feed for dogs, cats, hamsters, rabbits, even a little about birds. Where can I learn about it all so I can open a feed store. I am about to retire and would like to do this.
  • asiru olaniyi said on November 17, 2009
    owo, ondo state, nigeria. how do i start my feed biz in the area?
  • Aaron Beattie said on December 14, 2009
    We are opening a feed store in January 2010 catering for fur & feather, and also stocking Pig feed, pony feed etc, in a little town called Lochmaben in South West Scotland UK, i sure could do with a little advise, so if any of you good guys out there have the time i will gladly listen and reply to your do's and dont's advice, thank you and Seasons Greetings to you all around the world from the Beattie Family. Regards, Aaron Beattie,
  • Samuel Oris said on December 29, 2009
    i would like to start up a feed store 2010, in Asaba Delta State. would want your kind advise on the best feeds to venture on, thanks.
  • marcelo diaz said on April 15, 2010
    pasadena tx. Hi i am wanting to open a small feed store fore at home. I would like to know how i can contact wholesalers or dealers to buy feed and materials at dealer prices. See here where i live there are a lot of people that own gamefowl and thats the type of feed that i would need..
  • Thomas R. Smith said on June 27, 2010
    I am opening up a feed store In Bladenboro North Carolina IN the proud USA
  • Luis said on June 29, 2010
    I live in Tipton, CA in the US and want to open a feed store but I dont know how to get the license to open it can someone tell me how to get it?
  • Walter Jacobo said on July 10, 2010
    Hi I live in San Antonio Tx, actually right at the city limits and a lot of my neighbors have horses and live stock animals. I'd like to open a feed store at my home. Can anyone point me in the right direction. I starting from nothing, have the capital to invest just don't know how to start.
  • Kathy said on September 28, 2010
    I live in Whittemore, Michigan. The closest store is 15 miles away. Live in a big farming area. Was wondering who you could contact to see what it takes to open up a feed store.
  • Mike Gómez said on October 26, 2010
    I live in a small town close to San Antonio, TX. I have also thought of opening a feed store. It has always been my interest. Can anyone give me some input of where I can go and see what it takes to open a successful feed store?
  • Santos Rivas Jr said on December 29, 2010
    Hello there, I'm planning on opening a feed store in Fresno california. I have the farms with two big shops and a big shed, what would I need as far as making everything legal? what and how should I shop for with retailers? please advice.
  • charity hudson said on July 30, 2011
    I live in south alabama and am interested in opening a feed store. I need as much help and advice as I can get!!
  • Lisa C said on August 2, 2011
    I am interested in opening a small feed and basic pet supply store in Southern Michigan. I am looking for a supplier - any suggestions?
  • John Wilson said on September 28, 2011
    I am retiring from Army and I am considering open a feed store in Louisiana I have no experience but I found a business that close that have everything.Could someone set me in right direction Thanks
  • Vickie Perez said on September 28, 2011
    I live in San Augustine TX, and would like to open a feed and farm supply store, there is only one in the area and is 20 miles away. Most of the people around this area have livestock and animals and we are in great demand for this type of business, but I dont know how to get started, or who to contact.Really need advice and help. Thanks.
  • Bethany Jackson said on October 3, 2011
    @ John Wilson, where are you going to locate your feed store? I live in Louisiana as well. I have the experience, but i cant find a building. :(
  • M/M Tommy Lee Addison said on December 18, 2011
    I would like to open a feed store I own a couple of acres.
  • Jeremy Dennison said on March 16, 2012
    Thornville, Ohio- I am looking into opening a feed and supply store in my area. Any advise would be great. I have learned that you need to contact feed and other suppliers, they often have minimum orders and other requirements to order direct or become an official dealer, or even minimum square feet of retail space. Any one with information on financing options and actual cash required would help. thanks.
  • Rhonda Kegerreis said on April 4, 2012
    I live in Spring, Texas and there is a need for a feed store in my area. I am wondering how to go about getting a beginning inventory and what it would cost for me to start it up. Also, how likely am I to get a small business loan from the SBA. I am somewhat knowledgeable about feed and feel like I would be able to do well.
  • Charlie Corn said on April 19, 2012
    I am starting the initial phases of opening up a feed supply store. Any recommendations on Top Feed Suppliers in the US? I have NO experience in this area...but, I do know that it will work in Guam. Any helpful tips or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!!
  • Trey Hedgepeth said on May 22, 2012
    Back Yard Farm Supply Inc. Howdy folks just opened a feed store ! Whitakers NC 4710 Swift Creek School Rd.27891, please e mail me on handling sales transaction for farmers with no tax license, and the further paper work to do afterwards for my tax purposes. thank you.
  • thomas meeks said on June 28, 2012
    A friend and I are thinking about opening a feed store near bluff city, tn. Not sure how to find where to get top quality feeds. Any ideas would be appreciated.
  • nunya said on July 26, 2012
    if you like making 50 cents a bag on feed and hearing customers bitch about prices being high than go for it .
  • David Harrison said on October 12, 2012
    Plan to open a feed store at my horse stable. I have a good location and facilities with low overhead costs. I need advice on initial startup, contacting a supplier, permits, etc. I am located in cypress, Texas.
  • Suzin Wells said on December 16, 2012
    Hi my husband and I live in bunbury Western Australia we are starting a greenfield stock feed business as the 2 in the near buy town are poorly run. we would like to supply fur and feather stock feed plus small farming advice as my partner has a Ag degree in farming we will have online and delivery service pls a perscription service sending a message when they should be ready for new feed and this can be delivered and paid for by COD. We need to how how many customers would we need to make this profitable or how to work this number out. Many thnaks suzin.
  • Tinker said on August 26, 2013
    This whole industry is ruined by vendors that will not leave enough profit margin on the feed . You have got to have a lot of bags leaving out to make it work . On average the feed makes .25-.70 cents a bag . You have got to be competitive with the big co-ops or people will not buy it from you even if it is a few cents higher . You have people that think there is big markups in feed and constantly travel other places looking for best price . so no matter how close you are to people buying feed , the only way you will sale it is to meet or beat your competitors, even if they are 50miles away . dog food and horse feed is the biggest problems you will have. if you are not ready to sale 200+ tons a year of sweet feed , it will not be worth your time because 1 ton of sweet feed makes about 11-12 dollars a ton from vendors . most all the other feed is like that also. that's why the co-op etc are so big , because they move a lot of feed and mix their own . it is almost impossible for a small location to make it in feed. you would have to be a feed manufacturer to ever come up with a better profit , that is if you have a source to buy bulk ingredients by the box car load , and about 3 million dollars worth of equipment to mix and package the feed .
  • Bernardino B. Bustillo said on August 27, 2013
    I am currently researching all aspects of opening a feed store on Guam. What permits/licenses will be required in order to fulfill this goal? As there are several other feed stores throughout the island, I find that location is a key factor in being successful. What recommendations on behalf of inventory overhead, would you make in order to ensure demands are met? How often should re-orders be made in order to meet demands? What overall costs would be to include product? Shipping? Taxes (IF any)? And any other fees that may be involved in the order and shipping process. As Guam's yearly climate is warm all year round, would it be advisable to have a facility that is cooled? As a starter, what would be the average swuare footage required for such an establishment? Keep in mind that poultry/gamecock feed is the main source of the feed store?
  • papasebo_rubio said on August 29, 2013
    i was thinking about opening a feed shop in the virgin islands for dogs, horses, cats, fish, chickens, rabbits and i was would like to know how much i would need to spend on my first inventory to start with
  • gladys said on November 28, 2013
    I am a feed store owner. I would like to know the net profit margin for this category of small retail businesses, i.e animal feed dealers
  • Glenda Trenary said on February 21, 2014
    My husband and I live 45 minutes from the nearest feed store so we were looking into opening up a small feed store in our area. I'd like to know where to start as far as licensing etc. If anyone has any advice I'd love to hear it.
  • Sharon said on March 2, 2014
    Hi I live in PA. I'm trying to find out how to open a small feed store to carry goat feed chicken turkey feed to carry oats feeder corn how do I go about getting a license and from where and how expensive do you think it would be?
  • Paul said on July 11, 2014
    I live Garyville, La the nearest feed store is a little on not much feed and supply. The big feed store are both are one way 25 the other way 35 miles. I have always wanted to open one. I'm about to retire. I still young to open a feed store. How do I go by getting feed and tack supply. How do I start. Thanks Paul
  • Leslie said on August 26, 2014
    Hi I live in San Antonio, Tx. My dad is actually looking into starting an animal feed store, it's something he's really interested in. We have had all types of animals and we already have a location. We just want to know what next? What should we look out for? What not to do?
  • Kartikaye Madhok said on January 20, 2015
    Hello, I live India, Me and a friend recently set up a poultry farm. We have about 4000 chicks. And the vast majority of our expense is our feed(Pre-starter and finisher). We were contemplating starting our own feed, primarily for our own farm, maybe grow later. Can you please help me with the equipment and ingredients. Help would be greatly appreciated.
  • Michael watridge said on February 6, 2015
    I want info on where to get supplies to open a farm & ranch feed store and hardware in Elkton Tennessee and what I would need to do as far as financing it
  • zenaida pascua said on February 12, 2015
    i want info where i can get supply to open feeds store and agricultural supply.
  • Laura said on April 7, 2015
    Hello, my name is Laura and I live in Channelview, TX. I am interested in opening a small feed and supply store at my home for dogs, cats, horses, chickens, rabbits, etc. I would like to know how much I would have to invest. I also want information on where I can purchase at wholesale price.
  • Ernest B Doyel said on June 25, 2015
    Hi , I live in hesperia CA 92345 . I am thinking of opening of a feed store but I know nothing about it. Can any one help me
  • john said on July 10, 2015
    Absolutely a waste of time to even consider opening a feed store . The vendors will not let you have the feed at a wholesale price . The big Box co-ops etc. will be selling the same feed at the price you have to pay for it. Therefore you are to high on your prices right out of the gate , driving customers to them. Purin will not let a small business have dog food at the same price as say wallyworld. you will be paying the retail price when you buy it and customers are so tight that they will go where it is the cheapest even if it is 50 miles away.
  • Mike said on December 17, 2015
    I started a feed business in March, and by keeping our costs low and having a tight margin our sales are growing at about 10% a month.
  • HENRY GALLARDO said on February 29, 2016
    HENRY,I am interested in opening a small feed store and supply for livestock,in eagle pass tx.i need inf. about wholesalers,suppliers in the area,how do I star.the close near big city is SAN ANTONIO TX.
  • LaDonna said on March 1, 2016
    I am looking for info to start a feed store of small capacity. I am a breeder looking to cut my own cost of feed and looking to sell to others. I would like to offer a wide range of products but having a hard time finding a wholesale company.
  • Cynthia Robinette said on August 7, 2016
    I am looking to open a feed and tack store in Lenoir City TN. would love some advice on start up and suppliers. as well as all licensure requirement. interested in offering all livestock and small animal feed.
  • Remelle said on October 7, 2016
    @Mike #46, I'd love to chat with you! Can you please email me?
  • Tanya said on June 27, 2017
    Aloha, I live in Kona, Hawaii and the cheapest feed to buy is Walmart which you can order online, however it is in high demand here for livestock feed. Can you tell me who would be the best wholesale company to contact to work with to open a feed store at my location? As there is a feed store like 10 miles away however their price is ridiculous to Walmart. They double their price! Walmart is about 25 to 30 miles away and I will drive to buy it for I save more. I would like to help people here as well to save as I raise animals and it is tough to get feed at a reasonable price. Tanya
  • Folake said on October 28, 2017
    Pls, I would need some information on feed business, be it poultry, fishery and piggery feed, can fertilizer be added too, is it was economically viable, am just venturing into this.


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