Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Vital Farms

By Jenny Brown, March 23, 2010  |  Meet the Blogger  |  More Posts by Jenny Brown

Matt O’Hayer’s interest in chicken-raising started as a child delivering eggs door-to-door. Folks call him the Egg Man! Fast-forward to 2007, when he started Vital Farms, an organic pastured egg farm located on 27 acres along Onion Creek in South Austin. We visited Matt at the farm and, as you’ll see, learned that his chickens have an enviable life, with lots of green grass and plenty of space to roam. Vital Farms is a recipient of a Whole Foods Market Local Producer Loan, which they have used to purchase equipment to help them expand their production.
Category: Local




Amy says ...
FANTASTIC! I wish all farms were ran that way!
03/31/2010 6:14:02 PM CDT
Martina says ...
We also love Whole Foods. We,however, would like to know if your Farmers cut the cows tails. We saw that on the ABC News and it is very disturbing to us. Martina & Carlos.
04/01/2010 11:50:27 AM CDT
Liv says ...
Love to see animals provide for us without being treated harmfully and in a restricted place. I almost want a chicken farm for myself.
04/01/2010 1:56:13 PM CDT
chassie says ...
very inspiring. I loved the quote "If you expect animals to provide you food then you need to treat them the best you possibly can." well said!
04/01/2010 7:18:03 AM CDT
Debra says ...
Both Matt O'Hayer and Robert Kraft express an inspirational respect for life which they have translated into a model business. I am happy that Whole Foods supports companies like Vital Farms through its Local Producer Loan Program. You walk the talk.
04/01/2010 7:26:11 AM CDT
Lisa says ...
I love whole foods supermarket. I was surprise to see you have a blog. Well I shouldn't because now a days everyone seems to have a blog.
03/23/2010 3:50:17 PM CDT
vaughnm says ...
@Martina, we do not allow tail docking. Thanks!
04/01/2010 12:00:12 PM CDT
Lucia says ...
Hello Whole Foods Friends and Vital Farms Owners, I am a regular at my local Whole Foods store. I enjoy cooking all meals for my family; I buy only Organic an have my favorite's list-with products that smell, feel, taste and look the way nature intended, unfortunately eggs were not in that list until I tried Vital Farms' Eggs. I was a little apprehensive since I had already tried other brands of Organic Fed, sunlit, etc etc eggs but I figured I should give this one a try the same way I did with other brands and, it turned out to be a very good choice. The color of the egg yolk was the first thing I noticed, then the flavor...Absolutely delicious!!!!, not to mention the white part of the egg was as firm "all together" as a fresh egg should be. And then came the memories, It reminded me about the ones my father used to hand picked for me and my brothers to eat when I was little growing up at a farm... It was a special moment brought it all back from the perfection of your eggs! Thank you very much for bringing these beautiful memories back. I also had lots of fun watching the video and showing it to my daughter. I don't think she has seen a hen in her natural environment before. Please keep doing what you are doing and thank you Whole Foods for supporting farmers like Vital Farms owners. God Bless!
07/10/2010 6:33:47 PM CDT
Amanda says ...
I have a VOLUME 3, ISSUE 3, 2010 VITAL FARMS NEWS newsletter that I got in my Vital Farms dozen eggs from my Chapel Hill, NC Whole Foods. How many issues of the newsletter were there? Where can I get backcopies. Who do I talk to about this. Many thanks. I love your eggs; they DO taste better
08/07/2010 1:46:21 PM CDT
paig292 says ...
@Amanda Glad you like the Vital Farms eggs! You'll need to contact them directly for information about their newsletter. Here's their website: http://vitalfarms.com/
08/09/2010 8:57:52 AM CDT
tom perry says ...
i think that this matt ohayer guy looks kind of goofy. i like his eggs, though.
09/14/2010 6:04:07 PM CDT
Ariane says ...
Thank you for integrating products that have integrity into your selection. I love the Vital Farms eggs and do not mind to pay more money for them than for other eggs. Knowing I am supporting a sustainable business, that raises the animals humanely makes the food taste better! Not that the Vital Farms eggs need to taste any better. They come pretty close in taste to the eggs of our one single hen we had when I was a child. Better for the animals, better for the environment, good for us.
04/14/2011 10:36:31 PM CDT
Bryson Bertelson says ...
I cannot wait to buy land. I wanna make my own organic soap and chicken's. <3
01/27/2012 12:49:03 AM CST
Cara says ...
Last couple of times I bought your eggs from Whole Foods the yolk was really light. What's up with that? I've been buying your eggs for over a year for a premium and the darker yolk is what look for to let me know I'm getting what I'm paying for. Can you please look t this? Thanks!
11/27/2013 7:48:44 AM CST
Andrey says ...
Is debeaking allowed in humane certified products such as Vital Farm eggs?
02/13/2014 10:53:19 PM CST
Nikki - Community Moderator says ...
@ANDREY - I checked on the Vital Farms website and they state that: "We do not now, nor have we ever, trimmed or cut beaks, (this would be against our personal beliefs, as well as our humane animal treatment certification). We have, however, purchased and rescued birds that were de-beaked by a pullet farmer or as spent hens." Overall in our stores, there is no beak trimming for broiler chickens and game hens and appropriate beak trimming for turkeys when necessary. Animal welfare is a top priority for us and we allow the performance of physical alterations only when the overall physical and psychological welfare of the flock or herd would be benefited to prevent possible injury and only when conducted by a trained operator in an appropriate manner that minimizes any discomfort.
02/17/2014 2:53:14 PM CST
Kristy says ...
Do chickens that lay eggs have to be vaccinated? Thanks! Kristy
09/30/2014 10:14:25 PM CDT
Nikki - Community Moderator says ...
@KRISTY - I would suggest reaching out to Vital Farms directly so they can answer this for you. You can reach out to them at http://vitalfarms.com/contact/.
10/08/2014 5:13:49 PM CDT
Mike says ...
What is the feed made of that is fed to the chickens? does it contain any corn or soy? or is it natural seeds and foods a chicken would normally eat. A true pasture raised chicken would be eating seeds, grubs, plants, insects, etc and not corn and soy which can upset the balance of good vs bad fatty acids in the egg.
12/17/2014 7:50:26 PM CST
Nikki - Community Moderator says ...
@MIKE - Vital Farms has answer this directly on their website: "The ladies spend all their days outside, all year long, so a lot of what they eat comes from what they forage out in the pastures. Chickens are natural omnivores, which means that they’ll eat native and seasonal grasses (things like clover, rye, wild onion) as happily as they’ll gulp down a crunchy grasshopper or fat, juicy worm. They need about 4oz. of food a day to keep laying. So while they get a good portion of their daily requirement out in the fields, we make sure to provide them with a supplemental feed to keep them happy, healthy and well fed. The feed is made up of corn and unprocessed soybean meal - depending on the particular flock, it may be Certified Organic, NonGMO Project Verified or conventional - but nothing else is added - no hormones or antibiotics." You can find the link with more info here: http://vitalfarms.com/pasture-raised-eggs/faq/.
12/18/2014 2:30:30 PM CST