Number of Hens11, 600
Number of Eggs3.5 Million
Twin Willows Enterprises Ltd. is a first generation egg farm. In 2007 Rob and Lori Martens had the opportunity to purchase this small 3,000 bird layer operation, then producing free range eggs for Golden Valley Foods. The farm was expanded in 2010 and a new barn was built with expansion in mind. At 500 ft it would be large enough to house 10,000 egg laying hens. The older barn was converted into a pullet barn, to house 25,000 chicks growing into layers, filling a need for egg producers throughout Chilliwack and the lower mainland.
In 2011 BC had a surplus of free range eggs and so Twin Willows was asked by their egg grader, Golden Valley Foods, if they would consider moving to organic egg production. They agreed to take on this challenge and in 2012 the farm received it’s Organic certification. After another expansion in 2017 the farm now has 12,800 layers and produces approximately 11,500 organic eggs every day.
Q & A
How many generations has your family been egg farming?
We are first generation egg farmers.
Which family members work on your farm?
Myself and my adult children.
How long have you been egg farming?
Why did you begin egg farming?
I started working in the industry at 16 years old at a chicken hatchery up the street from where I lived. I worked my way into
sales were I met the BC egg producers. One day a customer told me, "You're buying my egg farm." By selling everything I owned and borrowing as much as I could I bought a small farm with 3,000 birds in 2007. We have been fortunate and have been able to grow to 11, 600 birds today.
What is your favourite part about being an egg farmer?
Best part of all is the chickens, they are amazing animals. I really enjoy watching them grow and produce eggs. They are amazing creatures and what they can produce is incredible.
Why did you choose the production type you use?
We started in free range because that was what the farm was producing when we bought it. Making the move to Organic was
an easy decision although it has been very challenging and has taught me a lot about chickens. Organic hens are not very
forgiving if you make a mistake in management. You need to make small changes that the birds can adapt to slowly,
otherwise the flock can get stressed easily. This is something only experience can tell you.
What would you like consumers to know about egg farmers/egg farming?
Know that when you purchase eggs from a BC egg producer a lot of care and attention has gone into producing those eggs.
As I producer I feel a great pride in that fact, seeing as I live it everyday.
What does being an egg farmer mean to you?
It means I get to get up everyday and take care of my chickens. There is nothing more rewarding to me. Except that I know
people from all over BC get to enjoy our eggs and that is the best part.
Who is your feed provider?
Canadian Organic Feeds
Who is your chick provider?
Hy-line North America
What brand are your eggs sold under?
Where are your eggs sold?
They're available at Costco.
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