Episode-1642- Expert Council Q&A for 9-11-15 — 12 Comments

  1. the building supplies question was really interesting 1 you kinda have to think about what it is you want to do. For example if you want to retain heat then you have to do exactly the opposite of what we have a tendency to do is American builders put your thermal mass is on the inside maybe use some thermal mass on the outside if it collects solar or deflects wind appropriately. Brick and stone are not completely maintenance-free they will require tuckpointing and mortar maintenance every of 25 years or so. Vinyl and composite sidings can still mold there are also susceptible to wind and hail damage is and UV bleaching and cracking you could spray your vinyl with Rhino liner if you could afford that. For me I have a tendency to go with half aesthetic half passive solar and a little bit of maintenance for example the homestead we purchased on 5 acres has wood siding I like Woodside so I’ll have to paint it. The advantage to painting it is over the years I can insulate and add radiant barriers while painting by sprinkling instalad through my paint mixtures I don’t know if micro ceramic radiant barriers could it be added to something like Rhino shield or on a liner come I have to call them and ask

  2. Thanks Darby for that answer!
    First, I thought they only spent 4 weeks in the brooder, Good to know its a bit more.

    Second, that marketing segment was phenomenal. I was going to be moving on to a farm that does non-certified organic practices. We would be helping each other a lot (we already have been) and he is already located at one of the most lucrative farmers markets in the south. (In an area where most of the country music stars live.) He also has a 55 member CSA. My thoughts would be to tap into his already established customer base.

    Further, I was also thinking of crowd sourcing the funding, kickstarter style, selling the birds ahead of time. For example
    $100 – out purchase of one of the 10 largest birds. (10 available)
    $50 – deposit on birds. (unlimited availability)
    $5 – Raffle ticket to win 11th or 12th largest turkeys. (50 available)

    Grow an extra 20% or so just to be safe.

    This would also be “on farm” sales, handling the processing myself and a crew of people I believe I could easily assemble. The customers would have to pick them up.

    Another option is to sell the birds “live” and have my friend (who lives on the farm) drive them to the processor and deliver them “as a courtesy” to the customers.

    • You are most welcome! The brooder really depends on region and time of year. Jack got away with 2 weeks because of location, that far south 4 weeks (on a broad breasted white) is probably fine. Your marketing strategy is sound, as you are basically an element partner within an existing business. And we collect a $25 deposit (non-refundable) to cover our turkey start up costs. I email all of last years customers in early July, and offer a 10% discount if they re-order by July 31st. The deposits cover the cost of the poults and some feed. See my farm website for how that is setup logistically and legally.

      As for the butchering, that really depends on each state. What you are describing (and what Jack described) sounds bass-ackwards to me. In “most” states, you sell a live bird and butcher on farm as “a courtesy” and free of charge. To sell off farm, you must butcher in a state inspected facility. To sell out of state, it must be in a USDA facility. This is how Indiana operated until 2014. You can now butcher on farm in Indiana and sell off farm (in state only), but it just changed. Know the laws. Call the state board of animal health and inquire about the rules before you start (without giving them your personal info or where you are located).

      Also, don’t under estimate how much work butchering is. And know that you have to get every.last.feather. out of the bird so it’s perfect when you charge a c-note for it. My average cost to butcher the turkeys is only $8/bird. Not worth my time at the end of a very long season to do it myself. To each his own but I’m a farmer, not a butcher. My .02.

      • Butchering: I am going to play it by ear…
        I am involved with several homestead groups on Facebook. I’m thinking at the beginning of the year, schedule two events where we all get together and process some birds. “Many Hands Poultry Processing” events. Everybody can schedule their chicks/polts purchases around these processing dates.

        Find a way to split the costs for renting the equipment; hiring a professional to train everybody (the first time); catering food; compensate a teenager or two to be a barista/ make up some food. Make it a yearly thing. Be the host farm and possibly sell other items. End up with organ meats/entrails/feet that nobody wants for myself/to give to my chicken layers/ or pigs or dog.

        Further, I was also thinking about doing some market research with some of the restaurants in town. I was thinking about doing a “practice run” before thanksgiving anyway. Conventional feed with about 20 birds and see how I do, make some mistakes, etc. However, If I start in late February in the brooder, I can do three runs by thanksgiving. I know that would be pretty ambitious the first year, so I don’t think I’ll be doing all that, but its nice to know thats how the math works out.

        Lastly, I threw a poll up on one of the homesteading pages last night. I gave several options, and the most popular one is Thanksgiving, non-gmo fed, Pasture raised, Organic finished (Last month of feed.) $6.99 lb. !


    Construction industry watch out. Above video link is the most entertaining because he is a back yard engineer who has 3D printed a structure. There are other concrete 3D construction printingvideos worth watching on YouTube.

  4. John – I just had to say the response on capitalism was excellent. Explaining capitalism from fundamentals in a way that was clear and simple.

  5. I’ve been looking for Doc Bones and Nurse Amy podcasts on iTunes and can’t find it searching Doc Bones or Nurse Amy. Help me out Doc or Amy, what search term do I have to use on iTunes to find you.