Hancock County 4-H Egg Business Project
The 4-H Egg Business Project is intended to provide youth ages 9-18 with learning experiences in business, entrepreneurship, record keeping, documentation, problem-solving, food safety, and animal husbandry. Under the mentorship of a trained 4-H Leader, participants will learn about, understand, and follow state and local regulations for producing and selling poultry eggs. The project may also generate an income for participating youth and their families.
Youth complete their project independently, but they are also members of a county- and state-wide group of 4-H’ers who are participating in the project. A trained 4-H Leader will assist Hancock County youth in preparation, business planning, record keeping, animal husbandry, and more. In Hancock County, this program is run in partnership with the Maine Small Business Development Center (Maine SBDC) at Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI) in Ellsworth.
- Perform a local market survey within your community to determine the approximate number of eggs and hens needed to meet that market.
- Purchase through UMaine Extension the suitable number of pullets for the available site.
- Prepare (adapt, secure, or construct) appropriate facilities to house the birds for keeping.
- Obtain the necessary equipment and supplies for the birds (fencing, wire, perches, feeders, waterers, bedding, nest boxes, etc.).
- Provide appropriate feed and water daily to birds.
- Obtain an adequate number of egg cartons.
- Learn and follow the state and federal regulations for selling eggs.
- Gather eggs daily, and prepare for selling eggs in appropriate packaging.
- Take part in related educational opportunities.
- Record all expenses and income related to this project.
- Record all production data related to this project.
- Keep a journal of the experience.
- Report the outcome of the project.
- Other tasks as assigned by your county mentor.
UMaine Extension will provide poultry- and project-related information to all participants; provide educational experiences related to the project such as webinars, hands-on workshops, tours, etc.; arrange for the purchasing of birds by participants from reliable sources and secure a group price for the birds; present poultry-related educational events for participants; check in with participants on a regular basis; and respond quickly to questions and issues related to the project.
*COVID-19 has impacted this schedule. Registered participants are notified of changes via email.
- March 22, 2020: Introduction to the Egg Business Project | 1:00 – 3:00pm, in-person at the Hancock County Extension Office (directions)
- April 12, 2020: Grant Proposals Due
- March – May 2020: Business Advising Sessions | 1 hour, individually scheduled, in-person at SBDC/CEI or other location as arranged
- April 19, 2020: Poultry Husbandry 101 | 1:00 – 3:00pm, in-person at the Hancock County Extension Office (directions)
- May 17, 2020: Chicken Biology 101 and Selling Eggs| 1:00 – 3:00pm, via video conference
- August 2, 2020: Preparing for the Blue Hill Fair| 1:00 – 3:00pm, via video conference
- September 20, 2020: Winter Care of Poultry| 1:00 – 3:00pm, via video conference
- October 2, 2020: Project Records Due
- October 23, 2020: Celebration at Cloverfest| 6:00 – 8:00pm, in person, Location TBD
Registration and Enrollment
Register at the link below by Monday, March 16, 2020, space is limited to 8 participants. If you are not currently a 4-H Member, please submit a Hancock County 4-H Enrollment Packet (PDF) via the registration form below, or by mail or email. Please contact us with any questions.
*Note: Enrollment priority is given to youth who have not already participated in this project in a prior year.
The University of Maine is an EEO/AA employer, and does not discriminate on the grounds of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, transgender status, gender expression, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, genetic information or veteran’s status in employment, education, and all other programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding non-discrimination policies: Director of Equal Opportunity, 101 North Stevens Hall, University of Maine, Orono, ME 04469-5754, 207.581.1226, TTY 711 (Maine Relay System).