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Care and Pride Go Into Our Eggs

Bryce McCory
Indiana Egg Farmer

“We strive to be the best we can be and produce the absolute best product we can.”

Bryce McCory always loved animals and grew up in a family that spent a lot of time talking about eggs.

Bryce McCory with his grandmother, Lois Rust

Rose Acre Farms was founded in the 1930s by David Rust who sold eggs to grocery store chains in Indianapolis. The grocery stores grew in size and number, and Rose Acre Farms followed suit. The company grew and today has multiple facilities in eight states.

McCory is one of several third-generation family members working at Rose Acre Farms. He joined the family farm after graduating with a degree in animal science from Purdue University. Currently two years into a five-year emerging leaders’ program, McCory is spending time in every area of the farm. So far working with the hens is his favorite place.  But the job is 24/7 and not always easy. According to McCory, “you can’t let titles get in the way.  Everyone pitches in and helps.”

Traveling to different farms and meeting different people also been a highlight for McCory.

He always planned on working for the family. “Nothing was as compelling as going back to the farm – this was always my goal.” McCory sees several benefits of working with family. “Everyone cares a lot and has a strong motivation to succeed. Working together has challenges, but it is rewarding to work together and fun.”

The family openly displays their faith with Bible verses on the Rose Acre website and its egg cartons.  Often meetings begin with the Lord’s Prayer.

There are many challenges in egg farming. McCory sees striving to maintain a positive culture and giving workers the tools to make their jobs easier as one challenge.  Another is keeping up with many regulations that frequently change.

What is McCory’s message to consumers?  “I want them to know how much care and pride go into our eggs.  We strive to be the best we can be and produce the absolute best product we can. I love the egg industry and am  committed and look forward to challenges, fun and lots of opportunity.”

“I have one of the best jobs in the world, helping to produce an important food to feed people.”

3rd Generation Egg Farmer Focuses on Honesty, Integrity and Safety

Sam Krouse
Indiana Egg Farmer

“It’s a very exciting, dynamic time to be working in the egg industry.”

Growing up, Sam Krouse witnessed the passion his dad and grandfather showed as they cared for their flocks at MPS Egg Farms. He worked summers at the family farm processing and packing eggs. After college, Krouse worked outside the family business in economic development and brand management positions and earned his MBA from the University of Michigan. In 2015 he returned to MPS, working alongside his father and brother, guided by the family values of honesty, integrity, and safety.

Krouse gained experience in production, spent a year raising pullets, and now heads up business development and consumer relations.

Sam Krouse (R) with brother, Dan Krouse

“Working in the family business proves to have more benefits than challenges,” said Krouse. “We’ve created an open environment where everyone is free to challenge one another, and we have the flexibility to do what is right while supporting each other along the way. This industry can be stressful, and nobody understands that better than your family.”

Krouse’s favorite part of the job is the continual learning. “Our industry is changing so dramatically and bringing so many challenges that we need to keep learning and growing every day. It’s a very exciting, dynamic time to be working in the egg industry.”

As a leader, Krouse focuses on creating a course of sustained success, knowing it will benefit MPS and MPS employees, many who have served for generations. “Keeping the focus on the core values, everything else trickles down to keep a positive spirit of continuous support and improvement. How much better can we be than yesterday?”

MPS Egg Farms is a sixth-generation family-owned business operating since 1875 and is celebrating its 50th Anniversary in egg production this year.

 

Egg Farming is a 24/7 Job

Jason Ramsdell
South Dakota Egg Farmer

Taking care of hens and producing an affordable food source is rewarding.”

“Day or night, my job never stops. Caring for a flock of hens requires us to be flexible, working at odd times and willing to give our attention to the hens as needed.” Jason Ramsdell, the general manager of Dakota Layers, is responsible for the flock on his family’s farm. He dedicates his days to overseeing the South Dakota company’s layer farm, pullet farm, and processing department.

Ramsdell joined his family’s farm shortly after he acquired his Bachelor of Civil Engineering degree from South Dakota State University. Starting as a construction manager, he utilized his skills to design belted, high rise hen housing and later stepped in as a processing manager before moving to his current position as the general manager. Not only does Ramsdell get to do what he loves every day, he also gets to work alongside his father, Scott, the CEO, his wife Tracy, the marketing manager, and his brother-in-law, who is Dakota Layers’ legal counsel.

There is no typical day on the farm; Ramsdell’s schedule is different every day. He schedules his time a week in advance to ensure he visits each area of the farm. Ramsdell showers in (an important biosecurity step to protect the hens from diseases) to the layer barn and spends a full day checking on the hens and the team in the production area. He also showers in and spends a full day at the pullet farm. Ramsdell’s favorite part of the job is “constantly interacting with employees and caring for our hens.”

The remainder of his time is spent overseeing the processing department, manure and grounds keeping and other areas.  Ramsdell even takes the farm’s local delivery truck out to deliver eggs occasionally.

“My family loves this lifestyle. Taking care of hens and producing an affordable food source is rewarding.” Both of his children enjoy watching the chicks grow, reworking eggs, and helping around the farm.

 

Additional Resources

For more information about eggs and the egg industry please follow the links below.