LAYDILAY ORGANIC EGGS
"Putting the chicken before the egg":
Welcome to our site. We are Laydilay - a small family run business producing cracking eggs and a few spin off products. Feel free to look around and have a look at our products - hens
(when available), eggs, mayonnaise
(see meringue page)
LAYDILAY - A Brief History:
April 2004, owing to an increased demand on Organic Eggs, Mandy started up a small organic egg enterprise with 70 mid lay hens in a small rented orchard in Buckfastleigh. Having worked with dairy cows in the past, Mandy was a little uncertain how she would take to hens - as it turned out they were an absolute delight - magnificent, majestic black rocks. They were proudly called 'Ladies who Lay'. As we were still deciding what to call the enterprise, Mandy's mother suggested that the name should reflect 'ladies who lay' and it was Andy's younger brother that pointed out that there was a song by Bob Dylan called 'Lay Lady Lay' - hence Laydilay was born. Having registered with the Egg Marketing Board and Soil Association we set about selling eggs and quickly realised that the demand for local organic eggs was larger than initially realised. A new chicken house and 100 young hens followed in June.
It became apparent that if we were to expand further we would outgrow the orchard quickly so we set about looking for land of our own. Fortunately for us 18 acres of already organic land just below Haytor in the Dartmoor National Park was up for sale and with an understanding bank manager and a house on the market - our bid was successful. As with all best intentions, the sale took much longer to go through than anticipated but by February 2005 we were up at 'Eggy Barton' with a further two new houses and another 200 young hens.
The concern of leaving rather valuable stock to the wiles of nature - particulary foxes - led to the puchase of our 2 alpacas in July 2005. Reasearch and talking to people indicated that alpacas and llamas are very territorial and are useful at protecting stock from intruders like foxes and badgers. Although we use electrified poultry netting, we felt that extra pairs of eyes at the site when we were not there would help us sleep more easily at night. It is hard to judge their efficacy but since their arrival we have only had one fox strike and I feel I must attribute some of that to Bobby and Antonio - ever vigilant!
Now we have1500 laying birds and are aiming to complete our total flock size of 1800 hens by the end of 2013. We feel we have reached the maximum that the land can comfortably hold without disease build up and where we can give the hens the attention we feel they need and deserve. A big THANKYOU must go out to all our wholesale customers who have supported us and to all their customers who have bought our eggs, meringues and mayonnaise.