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  1. #81
    Platinum Member
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    Inland Portugal
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    NH TCE45

    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    No, at 50% production they were doing a lot better than covering their feed costs. At the time feed was about 30c a kilo and eggs were about 20c each. Now feed prices are well over 40c a kilo and egg prices are the same, but even so the feed cost is only 2 eggs per bird per week. These are Euro prices, but us $US prices for comparison. A kilo a week is about 5 ounces a day, and if you are using much more than that then feed is either being wasted by the birds or it is being stolen by birds or animals.

    I killed them because of poor egg quality, the same reason we only kept our commercial birds in lay for 11 months in Scotland, because egg quality would drop from then on. They were still better than my opposition were selling, but we always aimed to maintain a better quality than everybody else. There our feed costs per week were equal to the price of one Grade A Large egg. FYI 4 grades in Europe - Small (cannot remember the min weight but up to 53 grammes) Medium (53-63 grammes), Large (63-73) and XL (over 73).

    Maximum egg production in percentage terms occurs, under range conditions, at 30-something weeks as a rule, although it can occur before 30 weeks, and it should be better than 95%. It is all downhill after that, but it is not unusual for birds to hold 95% for a few months. Average egg size increases of course as the birds get older, so the eggs become worth more if you are commercial.

  2. #82
    Super Member bp fick's Avatar
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    Beaver Creek, Northern Michigan
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    Kubota BX2360

    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    Quote Originally Posted by Duffster View Post
    I've tried 2 of those. I ain't holding my breath on the third.

    I might have to learn how to hybrid my own sweet corn.

    That's a good idea, actually. The better Golden Bantam strains are often called "Improved" or have a number like 12 indicating that either make 12" ears or make more rows than really old fashioned Golden Bantam. I'd like to work with one of those strains this year. The is a personal goal of my own. I've simply got to successfully generate an open pollinated, decent tasting sweet corn. That it holds sweetness for 8 days of shipping and shelf life is unimportant to me. Our corn is in the freezer within an hour of picking. I simply am unwilling to pay the absurdly high prices for "one time use" sweet corn seed. There's simply no margin in doing so. Way too expensive.

    It's a challenge I've taken on. I'll try 2 rows of 50' of just about anybody's open pollinated sweet corn as test patches. I am also going to commit some space to cross pollinating different combinations. This riddle must be solved.

    Let me know what you come up with, Duffster. I'll share what I stumble across.
    BP


    "Some chickens, some gardens and a Kubota."

  3. #83
    Super Member bp fick's Avatar
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    Beaver Creek, Northern Michigan
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    Kubota BX2360

    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    Attachment 290147

    OK, here's my sweet corn "bank" for next year. All saved seeds. From left to right they are
    1. A local 82 day, bicolor, super sweet corn. Saved. Prospect? Suspect as it is hybrid seed.
    2. A local 88 day, bicolor, very sweet, Saved. Also not a hopeful prospect, as it too is hybrid seed.
    3. F2 cross of Golden Bantam to #1 above. Hopeful.
    4. Straight, improved Golden Bantam, locally known as Illini Gold. Very hopeful.
    5 Pure Golden Bantam. Improved 12 type.

    With 2 pounds of each, I've 10 pounds of seed, enough to plant a good amount. Maybe 25 rows @ 200'.
    BP


    "Some chickens, some gardens and a Kubota."

  4. #84
    Platinum Member
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    Inland Portugal
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    NH TCE45

    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    bp fick, How much sweetcorn do you eat in a year? 10 pounds of seed gives an awful lot of cobs. I reckon 1000 plants is enough for my wife and myself to have some carry-over.

  5. #85
    Elite Member Duffster's Avatar
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    Wisconsin

    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    One can never have enough seed.
    "If everyone is thinking alike, someone isn't thinking." George Patton

  6. #86
    Platinum Member
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    NH TCE45

    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    Duffster, Yes, you can. At most you need a one year carry over. Feed the rest to your livestock.

  7. #87
    Super Member bp fick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    Quote Originally Posted by OldMcDonald View Post
    bp fick, How much sweetcorn do you eat in a year? 10 pounds of seed gives an awful lot of cobs. I reckon 1000 plants is enough for my wife and myself to have some carry-over.
    We put enough sweet corn in the freezer to last a year. I'd approximate 75 pounds? But...... I can sell every bit I can grow. I've never enough corn for the market. Sweet corn is a cash cow in itself, but better? It is the draw. Folks who turn in to buy corn never leave with just corn, if you know what I mean.
    BP


    "Some chickens, some gardens and a Kubota."

  8. #88
    Platinum Member
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    NH TCE45

    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    bpfick, OK. I did not realise you were selling it too.

  9. #89
    Elite Member Duffster's Avatar
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    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    Quote Originally Posted by OldMcDonald View Post
    Duffster, Yes, you can. At most you need a one year carry over. Feed the rest to your livestock.
    Um...No you can't.

    Sweet corn isn't the best but most garden seeds last many many years.

    I wouldn't be caught with less then 3-4 years worth anymore.
    "If everyone is thinking alike, someone isn't thinking." George Patton

  10. #90
    Elite Member Duffster's Avatar
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    Default Re: Self Sufficiency - Small Steps

    Bp, how do you get around cross pollination issues when saving your own seed?
    "If everyone is thinking alike, someone isn't thinking." George Patton

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