In 1959, Phil Wubbena pioneered the idea that cage free, better-fed hens are happier and healthier and produce better-tasting eggs. Today, we know he was right.
The farm began as a dairy production facility in the 1950s. After dairy farming for several years, Phil decided to try his hand at raising chickens and he purchased a complete chicken raising “kit” from a local supplier. It included barns, feed and animals.
Feeling that he could improve on the conventional production methods of the time, Phil began to experiment with different systems which eventually developed into what we refer to today as the cage-free production process. There was a serious learning curve, lots of trial and error, and lots of hard work.
Phil’s family was incredibly involved in the farm, too, coming home from school, gathering eggs, feeding pullets and helping with any chore. After going away to college, Phil’s son, Rod, came back to the farm. He and his wife eventually purchased the land from Phil in 2002.
Phil’s Fresh Eggs first began to sell our humanely raised eggs to the Chicago market in the 1960’s, before anyone had even heard the term “animal welfare.” In the 1970’s, as the health food trend began to become more mainstream, small independent stores began to pick up on our products. The real break came in the 1980’s when the general public became interested in a healthier more naturally raised egg. Consumers felt that our eggs simply tasted better and began to search them out.
Making Phil’s Fresh Eggs unique is our commitment to feeding our hens healthy feed. We believe in the old saying, “You are what you eat,” and we believe that holds true for people, and chickens, too. We grow or locally source our own corn and soybeans for the chicken feed, combining these grains with the highest-quality natural ingredients such as alfalfa and kelp. We never compromise our standards with less expensive feed or ingredients, producing a consistently wholesome flavor in our eggs.
Phil Wubbena was a pioneer in the field back at a time when no one knew what animal welfare meant. He practiced it because he had a love of animals and believed there was a better way – even if the mainstream egg industry was headed in a quite different direction. His humane concerns and healthier feeding methods were years ahead of its time and match today’s consumer preferences for food that is produced closer to nature’s simple ways.
To this day, Phil’s Fresh Eggs continues to be a leading brand, with both fresh and liquid egg offerings.