Where have most of the eggs gone? Market customers have been asking this question for the past couple of months, as the few cartons available are scooped up early. The answer is fading light! Egg production in hens is governed by light … as the days grow shorter, egg laying drops off. It’s nature’s way of giving hens a rest. However, all of this changes in January! Once we gain an extra 10 minutes of light, a glut of eggs are produced. It doesn’t matter how cold it is (chickens are tough), it’s all about more minutes of daylight stimulating the pituitary gland.
Well, how come grocery stores have plenty of eggs all the time? Commercial production is the difference. In these operations, birds are raised in “confinement systems” where they spend their lives in a wire cage, with lights on 24 hrs a day. They never scratch in the grass for tasty insects. Instead, they are given maximum stimulation to lay eggs constantly. Within a year, they they are disposed of and replaced. Traditional farm-yard hens can live and produce eggs for 6, 8, or even 10 years with good care and the chance to live a natural life.
So let’s be patient and give our barnyard friends their annual break … an abundance of top quality eggs will be back again after Christmas!
While the hens are taking it easy, the rest of us are in the midst of the busy holiday season! With only a few weeks left before Christmas, we are putting the finishing touches on our preparations. This year, how much of those preparations have been locally sourced? If supporting local is important to you, we can help. Aside from the awesome variety of goods available every Sunday, our Christmas Market will be held on December 15th. There will be over 40 vendors, with gift ideas for everyone on your list. Ornaments, centrepieces, sewn and knitted items, sweets, soaps, ceramics, artwork, jewelry, leather goods, local spirits, preserves, and much more! Feel good shopping at its best!
To learn more about the MHFM, check our website www.mhfarmersmarket.ca to see what’s new. You can also join us on Facebook www.facebook.com/mhfarmersmarket. From both sites you can subscribe to our weekly e-newsletter. If you have a question or are interested in becoming a vendor, please call us at 902-220-9114 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.