Problem with a market sizing question ("How many chicken farms are there in the world?")

Market sizing
Neue Antwort am 19. Nov. 2022
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Anonym A fragte am 16. Nov. 2022

Hi everyone,

there is this one market sizing questions where I can’t wrap my head around the solution:

How many chicken farms are there in the world?


I have found an approach on how to solve the question, but am not really happy with it. Do you have any recommendations on how to improve my approach?


Many thanks in advance!


My approach:

No. of chicken farms = No. of chickens worldwide / No. of chickens per farm


No. of chickens worldwide = Yearly chicken meat consumption per person / Average weight of chicken meat produced out of one chicken


Yearly chicken meat consumption per person = (Average weekly consumption per person * 52) / No. of people eating chicken


No. of people eating chicken = World population * Percentage eating chicken


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antwortete am 19. Nov. 2022
Bain | EY-Parthenon | Roland Berger |Former Head Recruiter | Market Sizing

This is the typical market sizing question that combines demand side and supply side approach.

You did great on the demand side. Simple and to the point. Yes, you could make it more sophisticated (segments, etc.). I would not segment based on meat consumption, but you must be aware that you have chicken farms for eggs, and both must be considered. Any other use is likely to be minor. But you cannot ignore a major use (hopefully the interviewer will tell you to focus on meat).

You need to provide a full estimation on the average size of a chicken farm, though. Can be something as:

  • # square meters
  • # chicks per square meter
  • rotations per year (i.e., how long does it take to raise a chicken, and therefore how may do you raise per year)
  • Capacity utilization (should be below 100%).

Hope this helps! Market sizing is one of my expertises, so feel free to reach out if you need further help.

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antwortete am 16. Nov. 2022
Ex-BCG interviewer | Ex Startup BU Head | Oxford Physics PhD | getting into consulting with a non-business background


your answer sounds like going in the right direction, however be aware that it does not take one year for a chicken to grow from crawling out of the egg towards being big enough to be slaughtered and eaten…

hope that helps

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Content Creator
antwortete am 17. Nov. 2022
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

Overall this is about right, but you've missed a critical piece! You need to account for annual production of chickens per farm per year.

This is the exact type of thing they are looking for in your market sizing (the “logic” side of things). Make sure you calculate throughput where needed and don't double/half count things!

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antwortete am 18. Nov. 2022
Ex-McKinsey, former recruiting team member

There's a fine line between being comprehensive and over-complicating, but some interviewers really like to see you segment the market. Even if you keep your average the same, voicing over “I think the average chicken farm has 1000 chickens per year. Of course there are some family farms, but I believe the vast majority of chickens will come from Tyson factory farms and so the average is still 1000 chickens per year”. Same idea for qty eaten: “you'll have people who have protein every day and others who are vegetarian but averaging those out, could be 1 lb of chicken per week.”

You CAN segment this further, but at least talking over how there IS segmentation would show critical thinking. 

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Bain | EY-Parthenon | Roland Berger |Former Head Recruiter | Market Sizing
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