I’m really excited to be working with Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs as one of their Good Eggs brand ambassadors. This post is sponsored by them, but my love for their eggs (and the family behind them) is exclusively my own.
Hop in the car and drive three hours north of New Hampshire’s Seacoast, through the White Mountains, into the rural farm country of northern New Hampshire and in a small valley nestle next to the Connecticut River you’ll find Pete and Gerry’s Organic Egg farm.
We’ve been fans of Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs for sometime now and were excited at the prospect of seeing where our daily breakfast comes from. May is probably the perfect time to be diving the rural roads of New Hampshire, everywhere you look a thousand shades of green greet your eyes. It’s my favorite time of year around here and the rolling farm land was looking particularly lush after all the rain we’ve had.
We pulled into the gravel drive that leads up to Pete and Gerry’s Organic Egg farm, the red barns standing out against the bright blue sky and the green pastures. Karl, a long-time employee now in semi-retirement was there to greet us as we walked up. He lead us through the offices, where everyone waved and said “hello” and down the hall to watch the egg-washing process. Their faces pressed up against the glass window, the kids took in the whole operation. “We wash and pack over a million eggs a day,” he said. “A MILLION EGGS!!!!” the kids echoed, they couldn’t believe it. Karl explained that these eggs are sourced from more than 40 independent family farms all over the Northeast.
While we watched the eggs get washed and packed, Karl explained the process to us in detail, how each egg is meticulously washed, measured and sorted by the computers in an open room and then neatly packaged at lightning speed in the next. The fact that only 1% of eggs break baffled me, it was amazing to watch a parade of eggs moving down the line.
Sourced from family farms
Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs are sourced from 40 independent family farms all over the Northeast and more than 120 independent family farms. As we walked the halls of the farm in Monroe, NH we saw pictures of each of the family farms; you get the feeling that “family” is a cornerstone to this four-generation farm and not just a token buzz word.
In the process of meeting the demand for high-quality eggs, Pete and Gerry’s is helping these small farms thrive–they provide the distribution and marketing that would otherwise be inaccessible for many of these family farms.
Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs are Certified Humane by Humane Farm Animal Care (HFAC), which has more stringent requirements than the USDA. This level of certification ensures that hens on each of Pete and Gerry’s family farms are outside for at least 6 hours each day and have a minimum space requirement of 2 sq. ft per hen. There’s been a lot of talk of cage-free eggs recently, but the reality is that those hens don’t have access to the outdoors and aren’t on the grass like consumers believe. That’s why Certified Humane free-range is the way to go! You can find out more about Certified Humane from HERE.
Seeking out the Certified Humane designation is what sets Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs apart from others in the industry: they are committed to the health and well-being of their hens.
While we toured the farm we got to visit a group of hens that were happily pecking the ground and dustbathing outside. The kids were timid at first, but slowly warmed up to the relentlessly curious chickens that gathered at our feet. They pecked and poked at our boots while the kids giggled and shrieked. Sophia was brave enough to hold one of the chickens and I took a crack at it too.
Buy food from friends
There’s a local brewery near where we live with the moto, “Don’t buy beer from strangers.” It’s a fantastic philosophy: the idea that you should know where your food (or beer) comes from and who makes it. Not long after we started making Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs part of our weekly grocery purchase, I learned another New Hampshire-based running blogger, Organic Runner Mom, Sandra Laflamme was connected to the farm–in fact it is her family’s farm!
Over the past few years, Sandra and I have gotten to know each other and I now consider her a dear friend. We’ve run several races together including last year’s Boston Marathon. Getting to know Sandra has meant I get an inside look at the core values behind the quality products Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs produces. I know that when I’m buying Pete and Gerry’s Eggs I’m not just buying wholesome food for my family but I’m also supporting my friend’s business, and subsequently the many family farms to which they are connected.
Seeing where our eggs come from first hand gave the kids and I a huge appreciation for the hard work and high standards of quality that go in to each dozen of Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs.
What’s your favorite way to eat eggs? I love runny eggs on just about everything, but over peanut butter toast is my favorite!
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Email: RunFarGirl [at] gmail [dot] com