Friday, February 20, 2015

Why Should North Carolina Eat Eggs Imported from China When We Could Raise Them Here, Asks W.H. Barton, County Agent, 1922

“Farm Demonstration Department” by W.H. Barton, from the Rockingham Post-Dispatch, January 26, 1922

Poultry on the Farm
It has been estimated that millions are spent annually In the United States for eggs alone. Much of this amount goes to china for imported eggs for consumption in this country.

The South produces less poultry and poultry products than any similar area in the Union. The egg is, next to milk, the greatest human food in the world judged from a nutritive point of view, and the price of eggs has more nearly been maintained at war prices than any food product of its importance in the Union. Notwithstanding this, we annually permit our families to want for this excellent food product and allow the consuming public to do likewise or go to China and other foreign countries for an inferior product, while we complain of a shortage of money in the community, which we have largely been responsible for.

We often walk 15 to 20 miles to kill a few birds, when if we had spent the same time in our back yard poultry interests, we should be better physically “fit” and fed.

Milk-fed poultry and the best article on the market bring a premium on any well-informed market. They are more nutritious, since the value of the food value of the flesh which is formed by it, according to Dr. McCollum, the greatest food specialist of our time. A well-managed farm always has the milk and is in position to not only live on “the fat of the land” but to supply it at a good profit to the consuming world.

Purebreds the Best
The best purebred well cared for hens of the country today are producing 250 to 300 eggs annually, against the average scrub hen which produces less than 50.

Even at the rate of half this production, 100 hens would lay 1,500 in one year, which at an average of even 30 cents per dozen would yield an income of $375 annually. Enough to buy all the necessities of the pantry other than what should be produced on the farm otherwise. Yes, we men “turn up our noses” at the poultry proposition now, but wait until Sir Weevil gets through with us and we shall be sneaking around to the hen roost to apologize to the old hen, and to accede to the wishes of the “better half” who has always argued that poultry pays.

Do you know that 100 good hens will produce more food in ayear than the flesh of a 1,000-pound steer? AND the steer is dead and it will require 2 years to produce another, while the hens are an asset on hand ready to repeat their performance from year to year, until age or death interferes.

If California can ship eggs to New York at a profit, we can do it too. However, it will be a long time before we produce all the eggs that the South needs.

Sir Weevil demands on each average farm a sow, a cow, 100 hens and perennial garden. Ignore this demand and suffer the consequences.

Attending Annual Meeting
The county agent has been called to headquarters for the Extension Workers’ Annual Conference Jan. 23 to Jan. 28, inclusive.
                --W.H. Barton

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