Regional Producer’s Improvement Project for High Quality Eggs and Other Poultry Products

Project Overview

FW01-036
Project Type: Farmer/Rancher
Funds awarded in 2001: $10,500.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2004
Region: Western
State: New Mexico
Principal Investigator:
Steve Warshawer
Beneficial Farm

Annual Reports

Commodities

  • Animals: poultry

Practices

  • Education and Training: on-farm/ranch research, participatory research
  • Farm Business Management: marketing management, agricultural finance, market study

    Summary:

    Beneficial Farm, a diverse small farm that operates a 60-family vegetable cooperative 20 miles southeast of Santa Fe, worked with fellow egg producers to try to develop a cooperative based on commonly shared values, production methods and marketing strategies.

    The project team concluded that there was not enough information available to render a definitive answer about what conditions must be present to support a legal, incorporated cooperative for small-scale egg producers.

    What does work is informal resource sharing, which allows for freedom and flexibility for producers and can carry a fledgling “association” for a long time on its development path. Institutionalizing such associations into a cooperatie requires a firm foundation beyond the support of grant money.

    Introduction

    Beneficial Farm proposed and carried out the Regional Poultry Producers Improvement Project to address obstacles to local farmers and ranchers (New Mexico and Colorado) who wish to include poultry in the mix of their diverse operations.

    Among the obstacles that the project sought to overcome were:

    1. Consumer preferences and awareness of poultry production issues that impact the establishment of production standards for a regional label.

    2. Dealing with producer issues that are involved in developing a label.

    3. Developing the quality of birds on a local level that are capable of producing eggs that will meet the standards consumers seek.

    Project objectives:

    1. Conduct market research with consumer to develop appropriate production standards and to test the vialiabilty of joint marketing and labeling of poultry products.

    2. Develop joint marketing and labeling of poultry products.

    3. Research and develop a locally adapted strain of laying hen as the foundation stock for an expanding egg, chick and pullet operation.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.