Free Range, Fed GMO Free Feed & Eggs Left Unwashed.
When you make your way up to the market on Sunday you may find yourself making a detour to admire our laying hens. There's just something about taking a moment to watch a chicken scratch through mulch for a yummy treat, or sunbath mid day. Children especially love to see them all running around - living their best lives.
If you've visited us previously you may be accustomed to hearing Josh or myself state "I'm sorry, we are sold out of eggs." As much as we wish they didn't sell out so fast each week - we understand that it's extremely hard to source local, fresh eggs at a reasonable price. If you've been a long time market customer you'll know we keep our eggs priced as low as possible. We want our community to have a source for affordable, nutrient dense foods such as eggs, ground beef, butter, etc. We believe everyone should have access to those staple ingredients locally.
An average serving of 2 eggs contains:
82% of your daily vitamin D requirements
50% of your daily folate requirements
25% of your daily riboflavin (Vitamin B2) requirements
40% of your daily selenium requirements
Eggs also contain useful amounts of vitamins A, E, B5, B12, as well as iron, iodine and phosphorus – all vital nutrients in supporting your healthy, balanced diet.
The powerful advantage of the protein in eggs links to the fact that eggs contain all nine essential amino acids – in sufficient amounts – to support effective muscle growth, recovery and maintenance.
Let's be honest - labeling can be a bit tricky to decipher.
The best and fool proof way to ensure advertising "slogans" align with your morals in how you want your food raised/grown is to visit the farm in question. This is a key reason we decided it was best for us to open an on farm market. We wanted to give each and every customer the opportunity to see, first hand, that the claims we make about our practices are in fact true.
So, when you see me advertise our eggs as being from free range chickens - that's exactly what you'll see when you visit. Our laying hens & their rooster companions are free to come and go from their coop as they please. We never lock their coop. It's strictly there for them to roost at night and to lay their eggs. It's always entertaining seeing them all put themselves to bed each night. As soon as the sun rises they'll make their way outside, one-by-one, to start their day foraging for bugs.
The first question we get about our chickens being free range is "Do you all have issues with predators?"
The answer is yes, we do have predators such as fox, raccoons, hawks, eagles and coyotes to
name the most common. However, we do not have issues with those predators attacking our chickens. We own a beautiful Great Pyrenees (Livestock Guardian Dog) named Goose who lives outside with all our livestock, day and night. You won't find her roaming the farm during market hours as she enjoys her personal space & isn't too keen on strangers (as it's her job to protect the farm from strangers). She will
protect the farm from ground and arial predators - it's quite amazing to watch her at work.
We source all our feeds from Homestead Harvest in Clearspring, MD. Their whole grain feeds grown on their farm, harvested, milled and bagged on their farm. Finding a feed company with such standards was a steep challenge in the beginning - it's a huge part of being able to supply the best food to our community.
Keeping eggs unwashed and on our kitchen counters isn't so common these days, which is why we always receive questions about our eggs not being refrigerated. It's a valid question!
Eggs have a protective coating on them when laid by the hen, called a bloom. The bloom partially seals the pores of the eggshell to prevent penetration by bacteria which means they are self stable unless you wash them (which removes the bloom). Our farm fresh eggs will last on your counters for 3-4 weeks. Their shelf life can be extended in your fridge for another 3 weeks or so. If you'd like to store them in your fridge right off the bat, that's fine too!
We have a mixed flock of roosters and hens (male and female) that comprise our flock. You'll find several different breeds too. There's a common misconception that you cannot eat fertilized eggs, which is not true. Eggs purchased from most grocery stores are from hens living in confinement, in chicken houses where there are zero roosters. Which is why most individuals are unfamiliar with this concept.
We hand collect our eggs from the chicken coop each and every day. In order for a chicken to start developing in the eggs the hen would need to sit on them to incubate them. Since we collect our eggs each day, there isn't a possibility for this to happen. Rest assured, you will not open your egg to find a baby chick from our farm.
We enjoy nothing more than being able to provide our local community with high quality, fresh, produce, meats & more... all while educating you all about our practices and why we chose to do things this way.