Handsome Brook Farms is Awarded USDA Conservation Innovation Grant to Pursue Regenerative Farming Initiatives

The grant will enable the nation’s largest organic, pasture-raised egg producer to participate in on-farm trials that further existing sustainability tactics

New York, NY, Nov. 30, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Handsome Brook Farms, the nation’s largest producer of organic pasture-raised eggs, has been awarded a Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). This grant is part of their On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials program and will allow Handsome Brook Farms to support five beginning farmers as they adopt climate-smart and regenerative farming practices, taking the company’s commitment to regenerative agriculture one step further.

"We are grateful for the support this Conservation Innovation Grant provides towards advancing regenerative practices across our grower network. This was a big win for Handsome Brook and the broader pastured poultry community that would not be possible without the vision and commitment of our Corporate Responsibility team," says Jordan Czeizler, President & CEO of Handsome Brook Farms. 

The funds from this grant will allow HBF’s farmers to pursue projects and adopt practices that have traditionally been seen as cost-prohibitive for them to take on. Practices and infrastructure investments will include, but not be limited to: tree and shrub establishment in the pasture, cross-fencing for exclusion zones and a more robust rotational grazing strategy, and the construction of manure and compost storage structures. The practices employed during the trial are at their core meant to create a more symbiotic relationship between chickens and the surrounding ecosystem. In doing so, the trials aim to demonstrate that these practices reduce on-farm GHG emissions, increase local ecosystem biodiversity, reduce on-farm soil erosion and watershed pollution, and ultimately save pasture-raised poultry producers’ money through improved bird health outcomes. 

“Through the on-farm trials, Handsome Brook plans to develop and refine a regenerative pasture-raised poultry needs assessment tool that can be disseminated across our larger grower network. Every farm is unique and should be approached as such. The goal is that we can quantify the value of regenerative practices both from a soil health and farmer well-being perspective and that the results will encourage further investment and adoption amongst our partner farmers,” says Kristen Wharton, VP of Corporate Responsibility for Handsome Brook Farms.

Handsome Brook has long been committed to making on-farm investments in infrastructure and enabling regenerative farming using farm-specific conservation practices, all of which were reinforced with the company’s recent B Corp™ certification.Their recently-launched Pasture Improvement Cost Share Program was specifically created to incentivize their many small, family-owned, and operated partner farms to implement sustainable systems that work for their specific needs. 

Further, Handsome Brook works with and contributes to organizations through in-kind egg donations to 501(c)3 nonprofits like City Harvest; corporate cash donations to mission-aligned NGOs like Soul Fire Farm, Black Soil, and Main Street Project (all working to advance the wellbeing of marginalized groups through regenerative farming and responsible operations); and an employee match program for eligible 501(c)3 organizations whose purpose and philosophy is consistent with the company’s animal welfare and sustainability objectives. 

About Handsome Brook Farms

Handsome Brook Farms is a pioneer in pasture raised organic egg production, the most ethical and sustainable way to produce eggs. Founded in upstate New York with five hens, Handsome Brook has grown into the largest producer of organic pasture raised eggs in the country, with partner farms in 10 states. Handsome Brook Farms is dedicated to acting Handsomely in all that they do – from treating farmers, animals, and land with the utmost respect, to helping consumers access a clean, responsibly-raised source of protein that they know they can trust – from coop to carton.


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