226: Kevin Van Eekeren on Store Bought vs Home Raised Eggs.
Recognizing eggs from lovingly raised hens and factory raised, regardless of labeling.
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Kevin is not your typical farmer. He was a SWAT team logistics officer; started Fulcrum Tactical- a charity that specialized in training SWAT teams nationwide; and couple years ago he started Fulcrum Investing- a venture capital fund investing in startups. He most recently started hosting a podcast called State of Logic which has a planned release date of mid 2017 with a duel focus on both the startup world and topics that affect our world, and not just in business.
In the middle of it all Kevin started Fulcrum Farms with just 28 chickens raised for personal use which gave him 20 eggs a day. So, of course he started giving eggs away and that is when restaurants and families started offering to buy them. To meet demand, he grew the operation to what it is today, 30 pigs, a few hundred quail, 100 ducks, 100 chickens, a few cows and two goats named Thelma and Louise. They quickly learned the best practice was to follow Joel Salatin’s example and use the nitrogen cycle for their own benefit.
Now they keep most of their animals rotating constantly to give them new pasture to graze and allow the land they just grazed to rest. Their biggest seller are his eggs and the reason is clear, there is a visual and taste difference between their eggs and those bought at the store.
In This Podcast: We get to know the personal motivations behind Kevin, a tactical advisor and egg farmer with a focus on clear visioning 10 years into the future. He tells us how his experience developing tactical training has helped him with his farm. He also explains about some of the labeling misconceptions of eggs, and why there is such a marked difference in eggs depending on how the hens are raised.
Listen in and learn about:
- Why he started farming as a point of relaxing even though he did not grow up farming.
- His first career as a civilian in the police department and Swat Team member
- His goal to improve the training for Swat Team members
- Moving into the next phase of tactical advisement for other companies
- His new podcast State of Logic which based on an experience of a news story that covered him and his dog inaccurately
- The farm he started as an investment property that is now a full-fledged farm
- Why he has goats and the lesson they learned from their first two goats
- Knowing where your animal products and by-products come from
- Home raised eggs vs store bought – even if they are “organic”
- Free range vs cage free labeling
- How quality eggs are identified – what to look for
- What a yellow yolk means vs an orange yolk
- Describing the egg texture and taste of home grown eggs
- Finding his vision and figuring out how to move forward with that vision
- The challenge to find employees that shared his values and work on a farm
- Realizing that the planning for 5 and 10 years out for the farm needed to be replicated in his other business ventures
As well as:
- His failure – Some of the struggles with finding employees that would work hard and still shared his values
- His success – Management of the lives of the animals on the farm
- His drive – Building a small piece of heaven here on earth (30)
- His advice – Question everything, do your own research and make your own informed conclusions was based on facts
Kevin’s Book recommendations:
All the books written by Joel Salatin
Zero to One by Peter Thiel
How to reach Kevin:
Instagram – Fulcrum Farm
Twitter – Fulcrum Investing