Australian Fair Food Forum

Meat Chickens - setting up an on-farm processing facility-advice requested

We are a small family farm 2 years into establishing pastured laying hens behind our cattle and 16 months into establishing a pastured broiler business, but having to drive a round trip of 560km to Imbil to get them processed! We are going to apply to our local council and to Safe Food Qld for a boutique meat processing facility to process our chickens. Does anyone have resources that can help with that (we are happy to pay for your time in getting things to us). The sort of things that could help are:

  1. Diagrammatic plans for the abattoir and physical details.
  2. approximate costing or you reviewing and commenting on ours
  3. Where you obtained your physical components from in form of plucker, scalder etc etc;
  4. How you dispose of the feathers, offal, blood etc. (We want to create fertility by composting all components we are permitted to)
  5. Any tips you could give us for the process, with council, the state government and Safe Food Qld.
  6. Draft management statement to modify to satisfy Safe Food Qld

A reality check on our costing would also help us to be confident that the abattoir element was financially realistic, because we have not been able to quantify any likely consultant costs involved.

assuming others used consultants we would be interested in whether you would recommend them, who they were and the approximate likely cost level

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Hi there - you guys should talk with Daniel and Leanne Cordner of Bellasato Farm up in Qld - they just did exactly all of this. And we’re working on a community-based chicken abattoir here in Victoria but are still some way off having solid figures and plans - happy to share when we do though as that’s the whole point! You could also talk with Jeff & Michele at Southampton in WA who have had an on-farm micro-abs for poultry for three years now. Good luck!

Thanks very much for that. From Facebook I can see that Daniel and Leanne have been extremely busy since they got approved! I emailed them a week or so ago but they have been too busy to respond so far. There are a couple of Victorian locations that may be a good reference point for you: Taranaki Farm (Ben Falloon) in the Macedon Ranges Victoria also have been recently approved, I think as an abattoir and on-farm butchery. Tammi Jonas of Jonai farms has a butchery set up, and has had for a number of years. I suspect that the more recent approvals will have tips and documentation that reflects the relevant authorities’ current requirements but thanks for pointing me to Jeff & Michelle- I might contact them if the more recent ones are too busy.

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A FB friend also did recently, they even got crowd funding working for them. You could send her a message.

Thanks for that, Kathy caught up with Belinda at the Seasonal Harvest Farmers Market recently and they are working on a cutting up room, but have put it on hold while the issue of a rail line going through their farm is clarified.

Hi @AytonFarm…I know it’s a while since you started this thread but how did you go? Any luck?

Unfortunately not. As we have said on our web page: “our knowledge of marketing and our limited ability to communicate the nutritional/health benefits of this type of produce have meant that we have not been able to bring Ayton Farm’s turnover up to a viable level. While we are supplying to a number of high-end restaurants, our efforts at marketing to other channels have fallen short.
Without Financial viability we cannot properly demonstrate the benefits of regenerative and sustainable practices, so a lot of our strategic aims in the project are not able to be achieved in the time-frame we hoped”.
Effectively we are only producing for ourselves and our family at this stage