Possible Markets for Fresh Eggs

By Richard Brzozowski, Poultry Specialist, University of Maine Cooperative Extension, richard.brzozowski@maine.edu

eggs in cartonIn performing simple market research to determine who will buy fresh eggs from you and at what price, you will want to think about potential customers in your area. Farmers usually consider their marketing area within a 30- to 100-mile radius of their farm. Your area will likely be smaller for convenience sake — perhaps a 10-mile radius of your home.

Types of Potential Customers

Here is a list of the types of potential customers who might be interested in buying eggs from you.

  • Neighbors
  • Family friends — think about the circle of friends your family has such as at school, church, sports teams, clubs, etc.
  • Relatives who live close by
  • Co-workers of parents
  • Neighborhood, small grocery or convenience stores
  • Road-side farm stands
  • Farmers who are a part of a farmers market
  • Farmers with a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) or membership farm
  • Bakery or cake-makers
  • Caterers
  • Nursing homes
  • Bed-and-breakfast (B&B)
  • Small breakfast restaurants
  • Churches for weekly or monthly meals
  • Farm and feed store (for resale)

Do Your “Homework”

Put together a list of specific possible customers with contact information such as their name and phone number. You might include space for comments about each customer designating their interest and number of dozen eggs needed each week. When asking about their possible interest in buying eggs, consider offering weekly delivery or pick-up.

Start with a small number of customers and increase your customer base with success. You want to make sure that you satisfy your customers. Don’t over-promise on the number of eggs you can sell. Your hens can only lay so many eggs each week. In addition, don’t set your egg price/dozen too low. Make sure you can make a profit over time. Use the Break-even Calculator for Poultry (Excel) to calculate a fair price. Once you have a set of customers, use the Hens Needed Calculator (Excel) to determine your flock size.

Sample potential customer table:

Potential Customer Name Customer Phone Number Comments (such as the date you spoke with them, their interest, and number of dozen eggs/week desired)