Why we became quail ranchers
Welcome to the Rusty Skillet Ranch and Quail Farm
Becoming quail farmers or as we like to say “Ranchers” happened very, very quickly.
It happened over lunch with a couple of my 9-5 co-workers when the biggest decision of the day had been made and that was what we have for lunch? Sushi was the answer. One of my co-workers ordered salmon roe with quail egg on top and I thought that is a fun looking egg…. A tiny egg led to a big idea.
After some intense research and about an hour later I called Jaci (Jacky) and said “lets become quail ranchers”….. To which she replied “don’t f@ck with me”! Within two weeks of that phone call we had invested in incubators and had our first batch of eggs going.
It is safe to say that things are still moving quickly and we are spending the vast majority of our time working on the ranch building infrastructure, tuning business plans, researching anything and everything we think is relevant and some stuff that isn’t, thanks Google, not sure how they know I would like to learn more about Icelandic sheep but alas I digress!
As we continue to move quickly here are the three top priorities we are working on to deliver value and build lasting customer relationships.
1. Complete the regulatory requirements to become a certified producer through the Nevada Department of Agriculture. A simple process that will allow us to sell eggs both from the ranch and farmers markets. We will be at the Sparks Farmers Markets in 2017 to start building relationships and introducing everyone to these fun tiny eggs!
2. Creating awareness “don’t be chicken, try quail” #don’tbechicken #tryquail #tinyeggsarefun and aligning growth with demand. Our goal is to not over produce and create waste we consider this poor management and in conflict with our belief that there is no substitution for the quality that can only be achieved through respect and care of our birds. In a perfect world as the demand increases the importance of our 3rd priority comes into play.
3. There are currently no USDA certified processing plants in Nevada which means we can't currently offer quail meat from the ranch. We are currently working on augmenting our business plan to include a USDA certified MPPU (mobile poultry processing unit) that would allow us to process and sell quail retail and wholesale. We hope to not only utilize the MPPU for our own purposes but work with other small scale poultry producers in the area so everyone can benefit from locally raised quail, chicken, turkeys and ducks…… But mostly quail