Over the last six months, we have been struggling with the decision to raise our egg prices; hoping that things would settle down after the COVID madness was over. It seems that this will not be happening any time soon. During the last year and a half we have seen Organic Layer Food, Organic Scratch, and Organic Fresh Vegetables continue to rise in price. This, coupled with the fact that gas has gone up quite a bit too, (in my egg delivery travels I rack up approximately 60 miles – or more if I make special deliveries – each week) has prompted us to begin the difficult task of informing our customers that we are raising our prices.
Beginning September 2021, our Large eggs – which are at the minimum Large, but include Jumbo will be $4/dozen. Medium eggs will be $3/dozen. Small/peewee eggs will be $2/dozen. We will also reinstate our delivery fee of 50 cents per dozen. If customers would like to avoid the delivery fee – they will be able to pick up eggs at the 2nd Amendment Family Gun Shop on Fridays between 11am and 5pm. We also added the ability to pay ahead for a subscription – in any amount – and the cost will be deducted from their balance each week. With a subscription, we will waive the delivery fee and they would just need to let me know when they DON’T want eggs, or if they need to change in any way. Some customers have already found this very convenient. They can stop at any time and receive a full refund of the unused portion of their payment, or be refunded the remainder if we have to stop delivery in the winter.
Even though it’s difficult to raise our prices, we still feel that it is within or even below the norm. Remember that our chickens: are fed organic food, have never been given antibiotics, enjoy a diet supplemented with vegetables and herbs from our garden and from our friends’ and neighbors’ gardens, (thank you Ali, Elise & Gloria!) and are free range birds, we have the poop on our deck to prove it! Our goal was not to make a huge profit from the sale of eggs, but to at least break even – and to be able to provide quality, organic eggs to those who cannot afford to purchase them elsewhere. We donate 10% of the egg production each week to food pantries or kitchens in the community. Our customers’ purchase of eggs allows us to do that.
One of our occasional customers told me that his wife had been purchasing eggs at the farmers market for $8/dozen. $8???? Wow! To me, that seems excessive. When I inquired about selling at the same farmers’ market, I was told that I could not sell as someone else was already selling, but I could let her purchase my eggs to sell. What the what? Doesn’t make sense to me.
My letter went out to several customers last week, and the response has been pretty good. One of our customers insisted on paying the delivery fee even though she wants to start the subscription service. I’m glad that they understand the value of what they are receiving.
In general, this summer has been interesting as far as selling goes. We have had tons of inquiries about purchasing broilers; we have butchered more birds this summer than any previous, and we have one more batch to go that’s supposed to be for us. We have also had more delivery customers, and more customers go on vacations or be sent out on Temporary Duty from the Fort than ever before. Our chickens are holding their own. We have a TON of medium sized eggs because Sue purchased several new layers last year. They are slowly getting bigger! We’ve been able to keep everyone supplied and also give to the Methodist Food Bank each week, as well as donating several flats to the Salvation Army Kitchen which serves free meals each weekday. That feels successful to me.
Other aspects of the summer have been interesting as well, but I’ll save them for another post. I’m leaving Friday to attend a friend’s Naval retirement ceremony aboard the Midway this coming Saturday, and then am staying with my folks for my father’s birthday on the 27th. If you know my Pop, give him a shout out on Friday the 27th! During this time Sue will be hand packing the eggs and my friends Holly and Jack (and Gus vicariously) have agreed to deliver for me! YAY TEAM<3!
I’ll be back soon and maybe have a fun report – or perhaps I’ll actually write while I’m gone! <GASP> Until then, as always~
Thanks for reading!