Hello friends! It is the deepest, coldest part of winter but spring is just around the corner and farmers/gardeners (including myself) are already starting seeds and planning the arrival of the first chicks. This is also a good time to really hammer out the details of the year to come, and to share that with you. As most of you know, Birdsong Farm is first and foremost a family homestead. We take great pride in selling our products to the community, but our ‘farm’ is a lifestyle first and income generator second.
Over the past 4 or five years we have built up our gardens, flocks and customer base and ramped up the income generation portion of our farm. But last summer nearly burned me out: between butchering nearly every weekend, food preservation nearly every evening and fewer and fewer weekends available to recreate with my little family….. i decided we needed a break. What does that mean for you, our awesome customers, in 2019? Read on to learn more about our plans moving forward and feel free to send us an email ANY time with questions or requests!
Farmers market: I have vended the Dallas Bounty Market regularly for the past 3 seasons. I’ve loved meeting new customers and friends there, and the camaraderie with my fellow vendors, but i’ve decided this market is no longer for me. I may still be spotted as an occasional vendor at this or the Independence market depending on how the new management of the Dallas market pans out.
Delivery and eggs: Through the fall and winter I have been delivering duck eggs to a small set of regular customers in both Dallas and Corvallis. Each town gets biweekly visits. The ducks are not doing me any favors with minimal production and SOMEducky deciding to eat their own eggs…. but my hope is that production will increase as the weather warms up so i’ll be able to open up my delivery roster to new customers. If you are someone interested in having eggs delivered on a weekly or monthly basis, please let me know. I plan to continue offering this service, but the schedule may be slightly less regular (see below).
Meat: I have been proud to be one of the few local vendors of (legally processed and sold) rabbit meat for the past 3 years. Unfortunately, the demand for this product is spotty and my profit margins have gone down. I will continue to sell rabbit meat until my current meat seller’s license expires (June). The price per pound has gone up to help improve my margins and i don’t plan to keep much in stock. If you are interested in rabbit, please contact me and I’ll plan to have meat processed for you at my next appointment with my processor. I butcher approximately every 5 weeks.
Duck and chicken are still very much available! We plan to raise Cornish Cross chickens this year, still on pasture most of their lives and humanely processed here on the farm. We have up to 50 to sell by pre-order to our lovely customers with discounts for bulk purchases. I hope to sell more ducklings this year and will continue to sell our meat to Taco Vino in Corvallis. We are encouraging folks to pre-order ducks as well. The ladies have already began to set and we’ll announce butcher dates as we schedule them.
All meat pre-orders require a deposit up front with balance due at the time of pick up: fresh or frozen by pre-arrangement. Visit our ‘meat‘ page to view all the updated prices and bulk order incentives.
Produce: I have considered taking on a very small group of CSA members to help me eat up the bounty from my large garden. Otherwise, on-farm sales of bountiful produce will be available seasonally or can be added to our delivery schedule. We often have an abundance of: sugar snap peas, kale, chard, zucchini (the best zucchini) and tomatoes. As previously mentioned, i may join a local market at the height of the season if I’m unable to preserve or eat my harvest as fast as it grows.
And about that life schedule: We plan to take several trips this summer. Traveling away from a farm with all the gardening and animal caretaking needs left to a house sitter is NEVER easy… but darn it, our dog isn’t getting any younger and neither are we! We’re planning a drive to Idaho and western Montana to feed our soul with some much needed adventure and sightseeing. What this means for our customers? We will probably not maintain a consistent delivery schedule every week and the risk of livestock casualties will increase without my loving observations. I would love to make an arrangement with a trusted customer or two to visit the farm occasionally to glean whatever produce needs harvesting in our absence. Contact me if that is you. Our butchering schedule will also be adjusted according to our travel plans, and pick-up of your pre-ordered meat will need to be done promptly.
So, that’s that. If you made it to the end of this long post, you are a trooper! PS, we are selling our 1990 Isuzu Trooper in case you or anyone you know is looking for a new old adventure rig. It can hold a heck of a lot of farmers market produce and coolers and loves to go surfing.
Thank you for your continued support! Please contact me at any time with special requests or any inquiries. Now is the time to order those chickens! And for me to build their new coop…. Hey, at least I got the first seeds started 😉 Here’s to a great year for all of us!