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Small Scale Business

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by LittleDinosaur, May 20, 2017.

  1. LittleDinosaur

    LittleDinosaur Out Of The Brooder

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    May 20, 2017
    Adirondacks of NY
    Hello,

    As per recommendation by CTKen, I'm posting here! Anyone else on BYC try going into business with their chickens? My goal is to run a small scale organic egg, meat and perhaps chick-selling business that functions under the NYS 1000 bird exemption. I'm looking to meet others, share tips and gain some helpful footing in this endeavor, especially in regards to laws/regulations. I've already begun devouring the ever-helpful articles by Cornell's small farms program (http://smallfarms.cornell.edu/).
     
  2. jake and pippa

    jake and pippa Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 13, 2015
    Hudson valley NY
    The 1000 exemption works for sales to individuals coming to your property, end users only. I think, but confirm with Cornell, that even to sell at a farmer's market, unless on your own property, you need to have birds processed at a NYS 5A inspected facility. There is no limit on the number of chicks you sell, but you need to sell 6 minimum by NYS law. My recommendation is that you look into your local markets and see what type of business fits. See what others are doing, and think of doing something that is not already well done in your area. I would recommend starting with one business before potentially expanding. For example, you could hatch and sell chicks, either standard breeds or rare breeds, raise egg layers, raise standard meat birds, raise exotic meat birds, raise other poultry such as ducks, geese or quail. Trying to do several businesses at once may not be practical or fun.
     
  3. LittleDinosaur

    LittleDinosaur Out Of The Brooder

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    May 20, 2017
    Adirondacks of NY
    As far as I had read, the exemption works for on-farm, roadside stand and farmers' market sales to end users. I decided to delve into research to see about selling at a farmers' market in NYS. Here is a quote from a checklist of permits, licenses and certificates for sellers in NYS (http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/wp-content/uploads/Vendor-Permit-Requirements.pdf)
    "Chicken
    -License not required to sell 250 turkeys or 1000 birds of other species.*
    -No license required if USDA slaughtered.
    -Article 28 License if warehousing for wholesale accounts.
    -Article 5A license required if selling over 250 turkeys or 1000 birds of other species.*
    * 250 turkeys or 1000 birds of other species processed annually."
    And here is for eggs:
    "Eggs
    -No permits, licenses or certificates required, for cleaned shell eggs maintained at 45 degrees F or less. Eggs must be from farm owned hens (not purchased eggs)."

    Thank you for your comment as it sparked more in-depth research!

    For my start into business, I hope to expand my egg sales first. I am already selling a few dozen eggs per week to my coworkers (and devouring the rest myself!), getting $3 per dozen for the organic, free-range, colourful cartons. My goal is to head out to my first farmers' market once my new plethora of chicks become laying hens and to set up an on-farm egg stand. I plan on getting into the meat sales later once I properly set up a to-standard processing area and become more practiced at butchering. I guess my biggest issue will be learning to market beyond just the word-of-mouth I'm enjoying now.
     
  4. LittleDinosaur

    LittleDinosaur Out Of The Brooder

    20
    5
    21
    May 20, 2017
    Adirondacks of NY
  5. jake and pippa

    jake and pippa Out Of The Brooder

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    44
    Dec 13, 2015
    Hudson valley NY
    "Chicken
    -License not required to sell 250 turkeys or 1000 birds of other species.*
    -No license required if USDA slaughtered.
    -Article 28 License if warehousing for wholesale accounts.
    -Article 5A license required if selling over 250 turkeys or 1000 birds of other species.*
    * 250 turkeys or 1000 birds of other species processed annually."

    I think that what they are saying is that you can sell home processed birds under the 1000 bird exemption, but if you sell more, the birds must be processed in a state inspected facility, you yourself do not have to run the facility. My understanding of the 5A license is that there are a number of subsets of this license, depending on whether you process your own birds or you process birds for other farmers. In our case, our birds are processed in a 5A facility operating under a "small enterprise" exemption, and we can re-sell them anywhere in NYS, including wholesale to retail outlets and restaurants as well as direct sales at farmer's markets. The 5A facility can process up to 20,000 birds a year on its state license.
     
  6. LittleDinosaur

    LittleDinosaur Out Of The Brooder

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    May 20, 2017
    Adirondacks of NY
    Yeah, I only ever sell meat when I cull more than I can store in my own freezer, so I don't plan on selling more than 1000 birds per year. The 1000 bird exemption should work just fine for me. I mainly want to sell eggs for now. If you don't mind my asking, how much does it cost for you to have your birds processed in a 5A facility?
     
  7. KikisGirls

    KikisGirls Professional in training Premium Member

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    Jul 31, 2015
    Houston, TX
  8. LittleDinosaur

    LittleDinosaur Out Of The Brooder

    20
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    May 20, 2017
    Adirondacks of NY
    KikisGirls likes this.
  9. KikisGirls

    KikisGirls Professional in training Premium Member

    16,882
    7,928
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    Jul 31, 2015
    Houston, TX
    Thanks for sharing your info.
    I haven't had a reason to research any of this yet and may never have to so I'm not sure of anything on this subject but i didn't come across that article and thought I'd pass it along to you just in case you could learn something from it.
    Good luck on you adventure and feel free to update your progress here. i'd like to follow along.
     
  10. jake and pippa

    jake and pippa Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 13, 2015
    Hudson valley NY
    I use a processor in the Hudson Valley for chickens, also one in the Capital District. Both charge $5/chicken. It is certainly possible to find a cheaper processor, but the processors I use do custom work, I can ask them to leave necks on and bulk pack giblets for one client, while taking necks off and packing giblets inside the bird for a second, for example. I used a cheaper processor at one time, the birds were not as clean, and I did not think the facility itself was as clean as the ones I use now. Presentation is important, the buying public wants a clean dry bird in a vacuum-sealed bag.
     

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