Anyone sell at Farmer's Markets?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by mswiggi, Dec 26, 2007.

  1. mswiggi

    mswiggi In the Brooder

    Dec 4, 2007
    I'm looking into selling poultry at farmers markets (I live in upstate NY). Anyone do this, or can offer some words of advice.

  2. Live or already processed? There are many laws that govern selling them already processed so check with your local agriculture office.

    You might have to do farm sales, many areas only allow that, so take something else to the farmers market, or go with someone who does, and have ads or brochers on the table for your poultry sales. Take advanced orders if the farmers market will not allow advertising of products for sale elsewhere, then deliver or have them pick up.
  3. mswiggi

    mswiggi In the Brooder

    Dec 4, 2007
    Processed...done at a state plant. I talked to NY department of agriculture and markets and they said as long as I processed myself under 1000 birds, or had them done at a state plant I am legal to sell at Farmers Markets. Now with birds being done at a State Plant as long as I have a bill of sale for X amount of birds (and not as a service) I am allowed to sell as many as I can in NY state.

  4. Wow good for you. That is very open, I wish it was like that here.
  5. CovenantCreek

    CovenantCreek Chicks Rule!

    Oct 19, 2007
    Franklin, TN
    Here in TN selling meat and/or eggs at the Farmers' Market is treated the same as a retail food store (without the store), meaning that I'm required to have a separate freezer (no household food) in a clean area (subject to inspections like any other food seller). I haven't started yet, but, like you, I'm in the planning process, trying to figure out how many birds I can raise on my property vs how many I need to raise to be worth the trouble. I only have 5 acres, much of which is already taken up by the house/barn/horse paddocks/arena... but if I'm only keeping the birds till they're 6-8 weeks old maybe no one would notice if I have a hundred or so in pens on the lawn. [​IMG]
  6. McGoo

    McGoo Songster

    I don't sell at a farmer's market, but I buy at our local market. I mostly purchase meat from Dines Farm ... They are located in the catskills and sell in my town on weekends. they sell all meats and poultry. I suspect they fit into the same category that you would.
  7. blue90292

    blue90292 Songster

    Jan 30, 2007
    Rosharon, TX
    the farmer's market should be able to tell you what is required for you to be able to sell on their premises. the local markets around here have a several page form that is required to be filled out and then they'll let you know if you can sell.

    a guy around my area that sells processed broilers sells about 3000 - 5000 a year doing it part time. after a while, he said he got a pretty extensive email list of loyal customers. he lets them know when his next processing date is, and they respond to him with how many and what weight they want. they come to his farm (of 10 acres) or to the local market the following day and pick up their birds. he said he never has a bird left over and usually has a line for any uncommitted birds people want to buy. btw, he sells his birds for $3 - $3.50 a pound and his birds weight anywhere from 3 to 5 pounds.
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2007
  8. mswiggi

    mswiggi In the Brooder

    Dec 4, 2007
    I know Dines Farms, they are who process my birds for me. Very nice people.
  9. greyfields

    greyfields Crowing

    Mar 15, 2007
    Washington State
    I do sell at farmer's markets. Poultry does not fall under USDA inspection, except for processors of over 19,999 birds per year. So therefore, poultry and rabbits fall under State inspection, which means it's entirely different in every single state. Some states are very accepting of small producers, others are not.

    In my state to sell off my premises (such as at a market), I must either get a permit for my farm (requires inspection and some production facility not inside your domestic kitchen) or I must go through a State inspected processor (of which there are only like 4 in the whole state who'll even return your phone call). It does work out as I take pre-orders for a set processing date where everyone comes to the farm to pick their birds up, which are bagged and chilled only through a processor. In every state, freezing, repackaging, quartering, etc. is considered 'processing' which you cannot do yourself.

    I think the advice you got from your extension office sounds great. Just be aware, you always need to let them know what you are doing, and likely they'll assing a "food safety officer" to your farm. How you store, refrigerate, package, etc. the birds if you process them is very critical and has to be done "by the book"... whatever your State book says needs to be done.

    I hope you enjoy your adventure. I too sell at $3.50 per pound for whole birds only. They are pasture raised and given certified vegetarian feed. I no longer do Cornish crosses, though. I'm working on my own breeding and also am very fond of Freedom Rangers, which you should check out if you seriously get into pastured poultry.

    Oh, finally, do not even consider attempting this without getting yourself a business license and insurance. I would not get a rider to your home owner's policy, unless it's specficially a farm policy rider. It's literally cheap insurance... and whenever dealing with food, your liability is immense. No 'hobby' is worth losing your home and life savings over.

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