The past month has seen me up to my elbows in paperwork!
It's that time of year. Accounting. Doing the farm books. Sorting through the farm receipts. Adding expenses, adding up income. Sorting the income & expenses into different sectors: egg sales, CSA, farmers market, produce..... on and on and on.
So far, there are some interesting numbers coming out, although not too surprising.
To the woman who yelled at me and stalked off this summer at farmers' market when she discovered I was charging $3 per dozen for my big, brown, free-range Eggs..... I would like her to know that I made no profit whatsoever on egg sales. None. I basically broke even on egg sales, because I had to pay for chicken feed, waterers, the chickens themselves, brooder lamps, more chicken feed, straw, fencing for their outdoor run, more fencing when a tree fell on our original chicken run, and did I mention chicken feed (we do feed our chickens all of our kitchen and garden scraps, plus some pasture for those who fly over the fence, but darn those birds eat more than you can believe and must have a lot of grain or feed in order to lay eggs). And that of course doesn't include any money for our labor costs (meaning we're not paying ourselves anything for taking care of the chickens). I'd like to pass this info on to the people who freak out when told my price of $3 per dozen.... just saying! :-)
So, yes, as I had been told by other sustainable farmers, there is no money in eggs. I'll keep doing it as a service to our customers and because we ourselves love the delicious eggs from our well-treated hens (and really you can't pay me money to eat supermarket eggs).
I have a feeling I'll still be deep in the paperwork for the next few weeks, although I can see a light at the end of the tunnel now!