Thursday, December 22, 2016


The Spirit of the Season

                I think it is universally well known that farm work isn’t one of those careers a person chooses because they hope to make a rock-star or pro-athlete sized salary from. No farm worker has been or will ever likely be featured in anything like the old television series called Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, we drive tractors rather than limos and we certainly do not dine regularly on caviar and champagne. Unless you farm technology like Bill Gates or Steve Jobs, then it goes without saying that farming earns a modest but honest living that affords a much different and less tangible type of compensation for each individual that can best be described as personal gratification born of sincere and genuine pride. What a great world it would be if that type of compensation could be used to pay the bills right?

                We all get by and make ends meet the best we can, much the same as many other hard-working Americans in this day and age. We are a family farm and every worker here is part of the family whether they are related to one another or not. When one among us celebrates, we all celebrate. When one among us has difficulty, we all feel the need to help in any way that we can. In my humble opinion, no work of “Feel Good” fiction jotted down by Charles Dickens or painted onto canvas by Norman Rockwell could ever convey the spirit of the season as accurately as the real life experience I have had the great honor to have witnessed.

                One among us recently experienced an illness that resulted in hospitalization that caused him to miss out on the festivities of our recent holiday party. Thankfully he recovered and is fine now folks, so please do not worry.  He is a hardworking young man willing to do whatever work needs to be done to include helping out some of the elderly neighbors who live near our farm. He is a true asset to the farm, a good provider and father to his young children and a great friend to us all.  Our General Manager, Bob, was concerned about the financial difficulties that arise from mounting medical bills added to the loss of income from an inevitable and lengthy absence from work added to how financially challenging this time of year can be for families with young children. Being the very conscientious and thoughtful person that he truly is, Bob did a little investigating of the farm’s accounting situation to determine if it might be possible to help our coworker in some small way. That didn’t pan out the way Bob hoped it might and so, rather than giving up on the notion, he discretely mentioned the concern to others. Remember the pride I mentioned earlier? Well, it is a very rewarding form of compensation, but it is also something fragile that can be bruised very easily. Someone once said “discretion is the better part of valor” or something to that effect and no one wanted our downtrodden co-worker to be embarrassed, so his name was never mentioned. Anonymous donations from everyone suddenly appeared. None of us were surprised by the generosity that seems second nature to all of our coworkers. It was when Bob told me that the neighbors added a substantial sum to the kitty that I felt the true spirit of the season set in.  News travels fast on the grapevine in a tiny little town like ours and goodwill on this occasion travelled even faster.

                Our co-worker won’t be swapping his flannel shirts for Armani suits any time soon, but I think his family will be having a happier holiday with a little less stress than they might have had. This event made me feel just great and I hope it brings a little joy to all of you too.
 Happy Holidays Everyone!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016



FARM NEWS

HUBBARDSTON, MA                                                                                                2016          
Dear Egg Buyer;
                I do love to tell people about this wonderful and charming farm, about our healthy hens, the exceptional eggs, and the fantastic farm folks that work here. There are so many incredibly good things to tell! All of the best features of our farm are the result of some very impressive Quality Control Protocols that every employee incorporates into their respective duties in order to provide you with the best eggs possible.  We do so many different types of quality testing and we are so proud of our commitment to quality that we have broken them down into a mini-series.
                 Upcoming issues of our Farm News will include six consecutive stories about our dedication to quality and will run for a very limited time. The numbered series will outline the quality control protocols we employ in each of our departments in this order:  1. Production, 2. Feed Mill, 3. Egg Quality Lab, 4. Processing and Packaging, 5. Employer and Employee, 6. Customer Service.
                I truly believe new customers and even our long-time customers will be pleasantly surprised to read about the various tests we conduct that go well above and beyond those required by regulative authorities like the USDA and FDA. The additional testing, documentation, and research we voluntarily perform demonstrate our obsessive commitment to maintaining the highest and most consistent quality organic eggs. We are always exploring and searching for ways to improve. We want all of our customers to know what lengths we go to in our pursuit of perfection.  The Farm News inserts offer us the unique ability to outline the quality assurance protocols we are so very proud of.
                If you are among the group of Farm News fans who like to collect them, you will not want to miss out on any from this upcoming series of six. Each feature from this numbered series will run for a limited time only.  We would love to hear from anyone who successfully collects all six from this series. Take a picture of your collection and send it as an attachment to an email to: customerservice@countryhen.com or you could send the picture to us in the mail addressed to: The Country Hen, PO Box 333, Hubbardston, MA 01452. The first six customers who manage to collect the whole series of six will receive a very special prize from The Country Hen.

Thursday, August 4, 2016



Sheila Taylor, Jim Rousseau, Mike Sencer, Brad Mitchell, Bob Beauregard, Henry Gillet, US Congressman Jim McGovern, State Senator Anne Gobi, Dan Galante, Raeanne Siegel, and State Representative Don Berthiaume


The Country Hens Open Their Nests To VIP Guests…..

The Country Hen, home of the Original, Organic Omega-3 Egg, was honored to host US Congressman McGovern, MA Sen. Gobi, MA Rep. Berthiaume, and other VIP guests on August 2, 2016.

Bob Beauregard, General Manager, and Jim Rousseau, Sales Manager, provided guests with a tour of the farm and sites of: The Country Hen’s expansion project and the renewable energy solar project. The expansion project, upon completion, will provide 3 new state-of-the art barns that will ultimately increase The Country Hen’s production in Hubbardston by 75%. When completed. The solar project will provide 100% of the energy needed for the main farm including all the barns, processing room, and feed mill.

The National Organic Program’s (NOP) proposed rule affecting changes to Animal Welfare in the organic system was discussed. In 2002, The Country Hen received organic certification utilizing a porch design for outdoor access. Over the past 14 years, organic egg producers have steadily increased their production with this design. During the tour of the porches, guests were given a detailed explanation of the benefits of the porch system. This included the ability to meet FDA egg safety requirements, practical manure management, disease prevention, and the reduction of exposure to predators and parasites.

Lastly, there was a discussion of November’s MA ballot question, The Farm Animal Containment Initiative. This would require that all eggs produced and sold in Massachusetts be from cage free production, which is the practice that The Country Hen has implemented since its’ inception.
For All of Us at The Country Hen, Kathy Moran

 

 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The First Annual Country Hen Scholarship Award 2016

EMMA GUERTIN RECEIVES
THE COUNTRY HEN SCHOLARSHIP AWARD 2016


 
The Country Hen farm is small compared to many egg producers but, despite our diminutive size, we are one of the largest employers in our quaint little hometown of Hubbardston, Massachusetts. Our founder, George Bass, has always seen to it that our farm actively and generously shoulders our civic responsibility to support our lovely little community in many and various ways. In the spirit of continuing this tradition for many years to come, George made a personal contribution to establish an annual scholarship for local students and The Country Hen  matched his generous gift.
 
Emma Guertin is the very first recipient from Hubbardston to be awarded this scholarship. We all hope this award will help her build a bright and successful future. Hubbardston will be celebrating it's 250th anniversary in 2017. The town folks take pride in their agricultural history of orchards that produced a local variety of apple called the Nonesuch. There is an old saying born of this pride that people from Hubbardston are particularly fond of sharing: "Our roots grow deep". It is an agricultural community after all, and as such, it is very farmer-friendly. Although producing eggs is considerably different than producing Nonesuch apples, the town put forth a very warm welcome when George first considered starting up The Country Hen farm in this location back in 1988. We are very proud to think of this scholarship combined with our many other contributions to this community as nourishing fertilizer  those "deep roots" need for spectacular growth that reaches not just into the sky but into the future as well.
 
Our General Manager, Bob Beauregard presented the award to Emma before the members of the town's Board of Education. Bob has quite the knack for public speaking and, in keeping with the town's appreciation for history, he made this modest little speech to congratulate Emma Guertin:  
 
"In many cultures and belief systems dating back through the ages, an egg symbolizes the future, the beginning of life, good luck and prosperity. For some, an egg represents potential and a promise yet to be realized. The children of our community represent all of these much more tangibly. Emma, your achievements thus far are a great indication that you are a very good egg indeed. We are happy to award this scholarship to you with the hope that it will help you realize your full potential as you take these first steps beginning your journey into adult life. We hope you achieve a very prosperous future Emma, Congratulations!'




Wednesday, March 23, 2016


The One and Only Esther Bonnie

We the chickens on the farm have heard rumors about some rogue rabbit taking all the credit for our eggs this time of year. Quite frankly, we are madder than wet hens over this outrageous claim. The girls have organized and nominated me as spokesperson to set the record straight once and for all.

          Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Esther Bonnie, spokeschicken for the girls. I would like everyone to know my version of how silly humans have mistakenly come to believe this ridiculous rumor about a rabbit. It is a simple case of identity theft. We can certainly understand how a human’s inferior hearing could misinterpret my name. It does sound an awful lot like the name attributed to that rogue rabbit. People need to understand, however, that it is impossible for rabbits to lay eggs. When next someone mentions this nonsense about an Easter Bunny, we hope you will correct their mistake so this rumor doesn’t gain any more momentum or start multiplying like rabbits.

Thank You Kindly,

ψψ

Esther Bonnie

Official Spokeschicken

The Country Hen

 

          To learn more interesting and true facts about the origin of your eggs, please visit our new website www.countryhen.com. Take a virtual tour of the farm, check-in on our chick-ens and let us know if you think we should add anything more to make the website better. Let us know what you would like to see. We really do love to hear from our customers.

Thursday, November 12, 2015


Season’s Greetings to all from the hens of Country Hen Farm!


 

The humans on this farm have dubbed me with the name Priscilla Bradford, of all things.  I have been told my name commemorates some event in human history where people reportedly came to this country by riding on something called a Mayflower. I don’t believe a word of that nonsense though. Humans have the strangest imaginations! I have never seen a flower in any month that anything bigger than a bee could perch upon. So I believe this story is the same manner of fictitious nonsense that spurred the hullabaloo with Esther Bonnie’s name. Some poor confused human made up this fairy tale about riding a Mayflower as an excuse to give me a preposterously unpronounceable name!  Have you ever tried to pronounce the letters “P” or “B” without using your lips? Now try saying the letter “S” without any teeth. There, now you can appreciate how difficult it is for chickens to say my name. It is quite a strain on the beak.

Esther Bonnie has asked me to cover some of her spokeschicken duties for her while she does some investigative research on another strange human phenomenon we have recently heard about. Something called “Holidays” whatever that might be. I must admit that I am not as well versed with translating human language into Chickenese as Esther is. She heard some of the humans talking about making egg nog and taking time off to celebrate a “long holiday weekend” and she was determined to find out what this is all about. She told me and the other girls that she was going to have to experience this first hand before she’d be able to explain what it is to the rest of us. I certainly hope she does not work too hard at this!

While we may not truly grasp much about human behavior, we do wish to share the festive spirit they eggsibit during this time of year. Naturally we strive to be poultritically correct in all things and so Esther has asked me to wish all of your humans glad tidings throughout the eggsentric eggstravaganza’s you celebrate even though we do not fully understand the meaning of Holidays we all hope you have very happy ones and that you and yours continue to enjoy our exceptional eggs in good health always.

        Sincerely,
 
 
ΨΨ
Priscilla Bradford

 

Monday, September 21, 2015



Charming Chickens

I felt very privileged to have been able to watch Sergio working with the youngest of our little ladies as he welcomed them to their new home. Sergio spotted little Lonnie looking a bit lost in the big new space so he very carefully introduced her to the “Food Court” and showed her where to get a refreshing drink of water and where to find the constant supply of delicious proprietary feed we mill for the girls. Sergio shows the girls around and very gently teaches the youngsters where to find the privacy of the “ladies Nestrooms” to go into when they lay their eggs.
Chickens by nature are very skittish creatures that can be startled by just about everything. Sergio moves about the flock very slowly with the utmost care to keep from scaring the little ladies. He is checking to make sure everything is as it should be, and to make sure everyone is safe, sound, and able to find their way around. The chickens really appreciate his calm demeanor and serene guidance and we all appreciate the way he takes such good care to pamper and protect our feathered friends.

Thursday, September 3, 2015








TCH CELEBRATES ANOTHER EMPLOYEE MILESTONE AT OUR

RETIREMENT PARTY FOR ARTHUR HENRY

AUGUST 31, 2015

 

          I have often considered my co-workers here at The Country Hen to be more like family members than co-workers. While it is true that many of us do work side-by-side with actual family members there is really not a defined distinction between relatives and co-workers while we are on the farm.

          This past Monday we all celebrated Arthur Henry’s well-earned retirement from his position as a Driver. Everyone enjoyed a catered meal in the shade of the trees while reminiscing with Art about good times and wishing him all the best for his retirement years. Art’s story will be highlighted in an upcoming Farm News insert as a tribute to his many dedicated years with The Country Hen. We thank him for his great work, his devotion to the farm and for all the fond memories shared.

WE WILL MISS YOU VERY MUCH ART AND WE HOPE

YOU ENJOY THE RIDE

Wednesday, August 12, 2015







 
 
Passing Down the Torch
 

Young Michael Manisy is learning the tricks of the egg trucking trade from vested Driver Dave Viets. 

Family Farm
 
The Country Hen family continues the traditions. Renette in our Accounting  Department couldn't be more proud of her son's work with us during college breaks in our Processing Department. Michael is now moving up into a promotion to DSD driver under the fine tutelage of Dave Viets. The Processing Team misses him already but all wish him the very best in his new role in  Sales.
 
 
 
Our Friend John was inspired by our exceptional eggs and our location in Hubbardston MA to write and send us this lovely poem. We really do love to hear from our customers!
 
 

 Dear Mother Hubbardston,

 
 I ate your tasty brown eggs.
 
 They went down to my legs,
 
 my eyes, ears and nose.
 
 I now wonder and suppose
 
 why I feel so good among folks,
 
 and seem to tell so much better yolks.
 
 Overall, you sure are a good egg!
 
 
 
 Thanks Ma,
 
 
 
 John J.
 
 Peekskill, New York State