In this post I would like to share with you my take on eggs. Sound egg-citing? As we, my wife and I, were laying the ground work for Doorstep Dairy, we had a few goals in mind.
First we wanted to offer the best locally produced products we could find. Second, we wanted to try to encourage a positive connection between the consumer and the producer. And third, we wanted everyone to win. The consumer would receive a quality product and feel good about supporting the local economy, and the producer’s product would be delivered to a group of people that may not otherwise have had the opportunity to purchase.
I had a farmer in mind to supply us with eggs. Joe is a dairy farmer and also raises free range chickens. It would make a great picture. A luscious green pasture with red hens roaming around and picking at insects and grass. I was looking forward to visiting with Joe and telling him about our plans to bring back the milkman. And then asking him if he would be interested in providing us with eggs.
I was disappointed when the Department of Ag informed me that I could not purchase eggs from a small farmer and market them to the public. There were two reason given to me. First, all eggs need to be graded by size, Jumbo, Ex Large, Large, Medium…. And second, all eggs need to be candled. This is a process where the eggs pass over some sort of a light. The light reveals cracks that may be in the shell and also blood spots in the egg. All good things I guess, no one wants to crack open a bloody egg!
So I ended up purchasing my eggs from a local food distributor. Now there’s nothing wrong with the eggs we have carried to this point, but there’s nothing really special about them either. We all want special eggs right? They were your everyday, run of the mill, grocery store egg. Big deal!
This summer I was made aware of Westfield Egg Farm in New Holland, PA.. They market eggs under the brand name, Nature’s Yoke. Westfield Egg Farm purchases eggs from small sustainable farms in Lancaster County and surrounding areas. The eggs are brought to their facility in New Holland and graded, candled, and packaged. Nature’s Yoke has a variety of eggs to choose from. All the hens are cage free, veggie fed, have no antibiotics, and no animal fat. They are also kosher. Watch an intro video here.
Nature’s Yoke is helping to “level the playing field” between small family farms and big commercial farms. It’s helping to promote sustainable farming and allowing us to offer our customers top quality eggs we can be proud of. These are eggs I can be egg-cited about!