BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Meat Birds ETC › Marketing Pastured Broilers: Stories, Ideas, and Suggestions
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Marketing Pastured Broilers: Stories, Ideas, and Suggestions

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I am looking for any ideas on how to create a demand/find customers for pastured poultry. Can anyone share how they found ways to get more people interested and build a customer base?

 

Any advice is welcome!

 

This is something I am working on and would appreciate any feedback!

post #2 of 8

Start your business off selling eggs. You won't make very much profit off of egg layers, but they will help get you into the market and gain customers. Eggs are extremely marketable; I have met very few people who would turn down farm fresh eggs, even at higher prices. Also, get plugged in to your local network of pasture-based/eco farmers. Go to farmer's markets and meet some of these people. Talk with them. They know about the ups and downs of the market in your area. 

As a side note, if you haven't already you need to check out your state's regulations for selling raw meats. Better to be informed and jump through the necessary hoops (and there are usually a lot of dumb bureaucracy regulations) than to get caught and fined. It wouldn't look good for your customers either. They want to know that you are on the up and up, and trust is something  very important when getting a customer base, especially as a farmer.

I own a small pastured poultry farm (eggs only for now!), and am really rooting for you in this! Please let me know how your operation goes, and feel free to ask me any questions--I'm not an expert but I will tell you whatever I know. It's so great to see other people doing the "pastured poultry" thing, really the right way to go IMO. 

Oh, and if you haven't already read Joel Salatin's Pastured Poultry Profits, and You Can Farm, you really need to go and read them! 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1088873/styrofoam-incubators-club ---Come join us! 

~Below Paradise Poultry~

 

Reply

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1088873/styrofoam-incubators-club ---Come join us! 

~Below Paradise Poultry~

 

Reply
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks! I will definitely consider that. 

I have read both Pastured Poultry Profits and You Can Farm as well as most of his books multiple times; they are what inspired me to jump into pastured animals as a business.

 

Again, thanks for the input. And I wish you luck with your farm!

post #4 of 8

:welcome

 

I've not raised meat birds for sale, but we've raised hogs on a small scale. We've found word of mouth is all we need to sell out and have a waiting list. Honey would mention he had half a hog not spoken for while at work and almost had a bidding war :D. I know with birds you'd have more animals per batch, thus possibly needing more customers, but this has worked well for us. Between work and church and friends, we've never had to advertise on CL, etc. 

 

If you can keep a batch of layers going, I'd agree on the using eggs as bait. I've given away free eggs to potential egg customers, I figure if it works for the neighborhood crack dealers it should work for me :rolleyes:

Rachel BB

Stem cell transplant from unrelated donor in Feb 2015. Thank you to all my friends here on BYC for all your support during my treatment and ongoing recovery!

Reply

Rachel BB

Stem cell transplant from unrelated donor in Feb 2015. Thank you to all my friends here on BYC for all your support during my treatment and ongoing recovery!

Reply
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by turkeyfarmer View Post
 

Thanks! I will definitely consider that. 

I have read both Pastured Poultry Profits and You Can Farm as well as most of his books multiple times; they are what inspired me to jump into pastured animals as a business.

 

Again, thanks for the input. And I wish you luck with your farm!

I went out to Polyface farm for a 2-day intensive learning seminar last summer and it was beyond fantastic. It inspired me to come back and begin pasture-based farming. :)

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1088873/styrofoam-incubators-club ---Come join us! 

~Below Paradise Poultry~

 

Reply

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1088873/styrofoam-incubators-club ---Come join us! 

~Below Paradise Poultry~

 

Reply
post #6 of 8
Ok I can't give all my secrets...lol

Meat birds are tough at first, the hard part is finding customers that are willing to buy more than 1.

I'm in my 3 year full time farming and 2nd full year with pastured poultry. I have orders this season for more then twice the total number of birds I did last season.( I did hundreds last year!)

I have a grocery store that sells my chickens, I literally just walked in and asked if they would sell my chickens, after a farm visit they agreed. I have a hard time selling to my egg customers, some buy a few but not what I'd like.

If you can get a farmers market spot that would sell plenty, I've been on a wait list for 2 years. So with all that said, I've found that restaurants are my best outlet for me. Much higher volume which translates to more money and cash flow. Takes time and lots of leg work just to get one restaurant to feature your birds, it's all about how you market your self. You have to be willing to fail everyday in order to do it. Nobody owns anything anymore which makes restaurant marketing tough but not impossible. You need to find chefs that are able to influence decision making and like minded owners. Half the places I go to are out of state owned despite not appearing that way.

I started pastured poultry last April with no restaurant customers, now 11 months later I have 4 plus the store. That alone keeps me plenty busy all season. I could have more but I'm trying to grow at a manageable pace.

Last bit of advise I have is start slow. I started with 50. When I had most of them sold I got 50 more. Pastured poultry is very profitable especially when you have constant volume. Building that is the real secret to being successful
Edited by slingshotandLAR - 3/16/16 at 6:02am
post #7 of 8
The biggest problem for me is finding the consumers you want to target, lucky for me I have a friend who cares more about eating local healthy food than how cheaply he can attain his food, those are the people you need, he also understands the price will be higher than he can find at the local grocery store and is ok with that. These are the people you need to find. I raised him 30 birds last fall and it worked out well for both of us, since I have had others approach me about raising them birds this year and he wants more as well as a hog.

I realized fast when I first got into layer chickens that plenty of people will balk at paying 2-3 dollars for a dozen eggs, these aren't the people you need to worry about, they don't understand the trade off of fresh quality products over store bought nor the additional cost associated with small scale production.

Just start small with one or 2 good customers, get out there in your community and let people know what you are raising and the benefits of it, the good news is I only see the climate for small time farmers getting better with the govt allowing overseas production and lifting country of origin labeling restrictions.

Make sure you keep a clean operation in case someone stops by to check it out and of course for the good of the animals, and with any luck word of mouth will be, as usual, your best form of advertisement.
Edited by blucoondawg - 3/16/16 at 6:12pm
post #8 of 8

The above poster makes a great point. You really only need to start with one good consistent customer. Folks who are passionate about local quality food are usually pretty vocal about their food and are friends with others who think the same way. Make that one person happy and they'll bring a lot of business for you. 

Rachel BB

Stem cell transplant from unrelated donor in Feb 2015. Thank you to all my friends here on BYC for all your support during my treatment and ongoing recovery!

Reply

Rachel BB

Stem cell transplant from unrelated donor in Feb 2015. Thank you to all my friends here on BYC for all your support during my treatment and ongoing recovery!

Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Meat Birds ETC
BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Meat Birds ETC › Marketing Pastured Broilers: Stories, Ideas, and Suggestions