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How To Calculate The Amount Of Deep Litter Material You Need

Are you looking to calculate the amount of deep litter material your poultry house needs?

Courtesy: Cobb Vantress

Calculating Deep Litter Material For Poultry House

When using the deep litter system style of poultry house, the material depth is key to absorbency. Too little and moisture build up leads to poor flock health which damages profits.

So, if you adopt the deep litter method, it is important that you lay down enough of your chosen material to keep your birds dry and in good physical condition.

Good deep litter performance translates into better carcass quality and laying production. A more profitable outcome all round.

In this article, I will take you through 3 easy ways to calculate how much deep litter material your poultry farm needs.

Poultry house deep litter material (depth or volume)

There are various kinds of deep litter material commonly in use by poultry farmers around the world.

Such material provides absorbency, cushioning and insulation for birds against the cold.

But each material has it’s own unique physical quality which relates to how much you’ll need.

Also, of course, the size of your poultry house will dictate the amount of material required.

Why it’s important to calculate your required poultry house deep litter material depth or volume

For the deep litter system to perform optimally, you need to meet the recommended minimum requirement for depth or volume.

This way you maintain moisture levels (from excreta) below the threshold of what is professionally considered excessive.

But determining exactly how much (in weight) of any particular litter material you will need requires a little calculation.

Not only this, but also in planning it will benefit you to calculate an accurate cost for your deep litter material. This way you can control your gross profit.

Methods for calculating how much deep litter your poultry farm needs

Easy to use methods for calculating your deep litter requirement:

1. Manual


  1. Decide on your chosen deep litter material.
  2. Identify the density of the material in g/cm3.
  3. Calculate the floor space of your poultry houses in cm2 (convert from m2 or sq. ft.)
  4. Multiply floor space by target depth of deep litter material to establish required volume of material.
  5. Define how many grams of material is required by dividing density by volume.
  6. Decide how many litter changes or rearing cycles you’ll perform per year.
  7. Multiply your deep litter requirement in grams by number of rearing cycles per year.
  8. Convert material requirement in grams into tons.
  9. Determine your price per ton of deep litter material.
  10. Multiply tons of material need by price per ton of material.

2. Try The Poultry House Deep Litter Calculator

To save you the hassle of running your own poultry house deep litter calculations as above, I’ve built this calculator which is simple to use and send you the figures by email too:

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Use instructions

Calculate poultry house deep litter

  1. Set the density of the material used in g/cm3
  2. Input the floor space of you poultry house(s)
  3. Input price of litter per ton
  4. Input the depth of litter
  5. Set how many times per year you will change the litter for a new rearing cycle

Want to tie in this operational expense to your farm profit projections? The you’ll need this next step…

3. Poultry Project Reporter 2.0

Calculating how much deep litter material your poultry farm will use answers some immediate questions, helping you plan input purchase.

But how would you integrate that cost into your financial investment projections or project report?

Here are some common financial considerations that involve the calculation of deep litter material:

To develop an accurate poultry farm cost model, we need to integrate your deep litter figures into your financial statements and frameworks.

For this, I recommend always using Poultry Project Reporter 2.0.

How it works…

Poultry Project Reporter 2.0 is the fastest and most accurate way of inserting deep litter material calculations into project reports or financial proposals.


The reporter includes the following features:

  • auto-calculation of floor space allocation from flock size
  • automatically determines rearing cycles per year based on rearing model
  • cost of litter inserted into profit loss statement of your poultry farm
  • 6 year poultry farm cost projection with deep litter calculation
  • PDF-version emailed to your inbox
  • total time: 30 seconds

Scenario planning is a great way to assist your decision making.

Using the Poultry Project Reporter 2.0 you can set up comparison calculations for alternative deep litter materials, or floor space of poultry house, for example.

Want to calculate deep litter requirement with another flock capacity and floor space? Here’s how simple it is to do this using Poultry Project Reporter 2.0:

The software stores your flock capacity entry from your techno-economic inputs and automatically carries forward the figure into your deep litter calculation.

Then integrating the final calculated cost into your expenses for the next 6 years, almost within an instant you can produce very accurate investment reports.

In fact, it really is too easy.

Within a couple of hours an entire financial project proposal for your poultry farm can be written.

Get the PDF version of your poultry house deep litter calculation

Want to save on the hassle of producing your own hand written project report?

Poultry Project Reporter 2.0 also automatically generates a PDF version of your report – at the click of a button. How? When you’ve filled in the deep litter form within 3 seconds – just press the submit button:

Within an instant, the PDF version of your data (incl. all your calculations) is sitting in your email inbox ready to share with your team:

So in fact, Poultry Project Repoter 2.0 enables you to publish a 6-year projection for a broiler farm’s deep litter requirement within minutes.

With Poultry Project Reporter 2.0 it becomes easy for you to produce a financial report for a poultry project with no experience – with ease. It takes does all of the difficult calculations whilst you simply plan your operations.

It helps keep your mind focused starting-up.

I hope you found this deep litter material calculation helpful in your startup planning. You may also want to read my comprehensive guide on writing your own poultry project report and article on the cost of rearing poultry.


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