Socioeconomic Importance Of Snail Farming
There are lots of socioeconomic importance of Snail Farming for farmers, consumers and even government alike. Snail has a very striking appearance and its reproductive habits are very uncommon compare to other mammalian animals. Most snail species are hermaphrodite which means they have both male and female reproductive organs and has the ability to reproduce both eggs and spermatozoa.
There are exceptions, some snail that belong to the Pomatiidae family differs because they have separate genders male and female of the same specie. It is essential to understand why it is good to eat and farm snails either as a hobby or for commercial purpose.
Understanding the socioeconomic importance of snails as well as health benefits of eating snails will help in adopting the right attitude towards eating it as food/meat, farming as for economic purpose and developing strategy that will result to increase in sales of the produce.
Social and Health Values of Snails Farming
The basic purpose of snail farming is to provide quality meat for both man and animal use. Snail provides high quality meat with high protein content (12 – 16% of life weight and 88 – 92% dry weight), having 9 out of the 10 essential amino-acids required by man, essential vitamins and minerals in high concentrations, and low fat level (0.05 – 0.8%).
The serum also enjoys high level of important minerals (Magnesium, Zinc, Copper and Manganese) and low cholesterol content (2.2 – 3.7mMol/l). These qualities make this tender nature’s product (snail) ideal for all stages of human life – foetal life, babies, children, adults, nursing mothers and the aged.
The meat adds class to served human food in regions where it is favoured.
The high nutrient helps in building a healthy home and populace.
Snail meat may be served as an excellent replacement for ‘red’ meat. The meat is often tolerated in (Christians and Muslims) festivals where eating of ‘red meat’ is forbidden.
Snail meat preparations and ‘drinks’ are ideal meals for breaking fast.
It may be given as gift to sick friends or those recuperating from an ailment, because of its values.
They may be raised as pets or used as laboratory animals.
Snail shells may be modified into house decorative, paper holders, ash-trays, abrasive for washing household utensils, ceramics, and some other useful house materials.
The shells may also be converted into souvenir.
The taboo about eating snails during pregnancy is false. Rather than a child drooling, the child actually becomes strong, good looking, healthy and vibrant.
Economic Values of Snail Farming
Snail Farming has enormous economic values for farmers. Production requires relatively meager capital when compared to other conventional animal farming.
Establishing a standard snailery creates job opportunities for others.
Farming snails require minimal (routine) management. Just a daily evening sacrifice is required to manage farmed snails without much stress. An income earner (working from 7:00am to 6:00pm) may possibly combine his daily work with snail farming by attending to them about an hour after working hours.
The risk of job hazards such as pecking, biting and bullying is virtually nil in well managed snailery.
It is a venture that serves as an income generating business.
The farming may generate some revenue for a nation through product exportation.
Pharmaceuticals products such as ear and eye drops, and skin treatment creams may be produced from snail for revenue generation.
Farming snails within one’s household for domestic consumption reduces budget expenses on meat.
Frequent snail consumption may likely reduce expenses on medical bills.
This an act of laying eggs, it occurs three to six days after a brown snail is fertilized. The snail will shovel dirt with its muscular foot to build a nest for its eggs. Snails lay between 30 and 120 eggs at one time, the average nest containing 86 eggs. The eggs are white and 1/8 inch in diameter. Once laid, the snail covers the eggs with a mixture of soil, mucus and excrement.
After oviposition, the snail is typically ready to reproduce again in six weeks. Soil conditions, temperature and humidity all affect when the snail will be ready to reproduce. Low temperatures and low humidity cause snails to become inactive and dry soil isn’t suitable for nesting.
When conditions are optimal (warm weather, high humidity), snails can reproduce as frequently as once a month. If the average snail lays 86 eggs per cycle and has an average of five reproductive cycles a year, each individual snail can lay 430 eggs a year.
Snail is one of the wonders of nature whose benefits are yet to be properly utilized. Eating snail is essential for good health, involving in snail farming will increase our income, even snail shell is both medicinal and ornamental. It is easy, it is not capital intensive, it has an attractive market value and it is acceptable in many cultures. Therefore, individuals and government should be involved.