Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Selling hatching eggs  (Read 16885 times)

ScribbleUk

  • Joined Sep 2012
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #15 on: January 14, 2014, 12:17:53 pm »
I keep a record of whom I have bought from on eBay, how many showed signs of fertility and how many actually hatched.  A pattern very quickly emerges of those that are doing their best to ensure they are sending good quality eggs and those that are putting any old egg in a box.  It's worth keeping the record in case you see an auction a few months later that interests you, then you can quickly check to see if you have encountered the seller before. 

Most of my sales pass without incident, but there are always a few that are difficult.  Sometimes buyer expectations are too high, or they feel that a threat of negative feedback can extort more free eggs from you which sort of ruins the whole experience.  It always strikes me as odd that a person may want a refund but refuses to return the original eggs.  In what other scenario would you ever expect to get a refund if you don't return the original goods?!  On the positive side, it is great to hear positive feedback from buyers letting you know they have had a good hatch and the chicks are doing well.

Don't expect to make a profit - as previously said ebay and Paypal fees take all that from you. 

I use Special Delivery for most sales.  On the theory that the eggs are handled a bit more gently and it is guaranteed next day.  But anyway, it is a tracked service so it prevents any claims of 'it never arrived ... send me some more', and also if someone is generally interested in the breed and their welfare, they will be prepared to pay a bit extra to ensure a smoother quicker delivery. 

Bodger

  • Joined Jul 2009
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #16 on: January 14, 2014, 12:42:40 pm »
Some misguided punters even associate blood spots as being a sign of egg fertility, so what chance have you got? :roflanim:

hughesy

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Anglesey
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #17 on: January 14, 2014, 01:05:54 pm »
On reflection, and having read other people's experiences here, I think the main reason I've stopped selling on ebay is because I got fed up of dealing with idiots. I used to go to great lengths to ensure fertility was top notch and that the eggs were looked after as well as possible. I got a lot of positive feedback from very satisfied customers but the few that weren't reasonable spoilt the whole thing. I've just remembered one who demanded that I send out a batch of fresh eggs because they hadn't been in when they were delivered and the postman had left them in their porch, where it was quite hot.. How is that my problem?

Stereo

  • Joined Aug 2012
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #18 on: January 14, 2014, 02:15:28 pm »
Interesting Scribble. Why wouldn't you expect a profit? It seems the general buy it now price for eggs is 1 each plus 9 or so postage.so 15 for 6.  Given that with a PPI account you can send them 1st class for about 2.50, ebay will take maybe 1.50 plus your listing fees, paypal 50p or so, packaging 50p. Seems like a profit to me.

HesterF

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Kent
  • HesterF
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #19 on: January 14, 2014, 10:41:53 pm »
Thanks all - some really useful information.

I am reluctant to use eBay because they are no longer the site they used to be when it was mostly individuals selling stuff. Now it's mostly businesses that are often just specialists in selling 'stuff' on eBay. I prefer Preloved and have bought some lovely birds through them plus sold a couple but you can't sell hatching eggs. Having said that, I'm with Stereo - there must be some profit to be made, even if it's less than it was. Given I sell eggs for eating at 1.30 for half a dozen (chickens) or 1.50 for ducks, surely I'd still make more than that through eBay even if I don't sell huge amounts?

I've never bought hatching eggs via eBay but I did get three lots posted last year and was pretty impressed with the fertility. One lot of ducks, I hatched six out of six eggs and overall I had 12 fertile out of 19 which is not far off what I'd expect at home. I was talking to a big breeder recently though and she said she's pulled out of eBay for the reason many of you have mentioned - the few that just complain that they haven't got 100% fertility and are completely unreasonable.

It sounds sensible to set up an alternative ID just for selling eggs so I don't trash the rest of my profile (I have other stuff to clear when I get my act together) and I need to look into packaging and postage (special delivery charges vs. first class, what's a PPI account?).

If anybody has any other suggestions of where else to advertise (apart from on here), shout them out!

Thanks.

Stereo

  • Joined Aug 2012
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #20 on: January 15, 2014, 01:04:57 am »
It's not a PPI account as such, but packetpost which is a bulk mailing service. The PPI is the stamp you see on some post which now say 24 or 48 etc. There are much wider size limits and you can send a 1kg box for about 2.60 I think. Google it. Only problem is that you need to send 5000 packets a year but you can get away with a lot less.  I guess there are also things like Myhermes or whatever which are cheap.

We use the 48 service and average under 1kg for our bulk posting so pay 1.80 per packet. A guy sent something back to us the other day and it cost him 9.10 at the PO counter.  So maybe finding a way to use packetpost is the key. Any internet mail order businesses nearby? They might be happy for you to use their account for a small premium.

Bodger

  • Joined Jul 2009
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #21 on: January 15, 2014, 07:24:11 am »
If you're a bona fide fully participating member, then most forums will only be happy to allow you to sell your hatching eggs through their trading post sections. What they don't like, are members who register just to advertise. :chook:

ScribbleUk

  • Joined Sep 2012
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #22 on: January 15, 2014, 08:31:28 am »
Interesting Scribble. Why wouldn't you expect a profit? It seems the general buy it now price for eggs is 1 each plus 9 or so postage.so 15 for 6.  Given that with a PPI account you can send them 1st class for about 2.50, ebay will take maybe 1.50 plus your listing fees, paypal 50p or so, packaging 50p. Seems like a profit to me.

Personally I only charge my P&P at cost as I know it annoys me when I buy eggs and pay so much for posting knowing it will turn up with a first class stamp.  In terms of profit per egg, on first glance it would appear like a profit, but when you consider you will have had to feed a cockerel and other hens who may not have contributed to the egg box, plus bedding, medicine, your own time, etc the profit is minimal.  I prefer to consider it a self-funding hobby.  Certainly more profit could be made around the P&P, but I tend to avoid sellers charging high postage costs as it feels like profiteering.  Personally I would prefer they charge more for their eggs as it would indicate they place a higher value on the quality of their product.

hughesy

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Anglesey
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #23 on: January 15, 2014, 08:42:26 am »
I used to charge 12 quid for a dozen and after fees I reckon I came away with just under 9 quid, That is a big difference from 1.50 for half a dozen eating eggs but it does come with an awful lot of hassle.  My original plan was to increase the number of breeds I had in order to sell more eggs but you have to think of all the background costs like separate housing and runs for all the different breeds. Plus you'll end up with a lot of birds that still need feeding in the winter when they're not laying and nobody's buying the eggs anyway. Not to mention the difficulties of breeding a flock worth breeding from multiplied by however many breeds you're keeping. I know there are a lot of scallies on ebay selling any old crap but if you want to do it properly it's not as simple as it first looks.

Bodger

  • Joined Jul 2009
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #24 on: January 15, 2014, 09:23:04 am »
To keep a particular breed of chickens properly, you need to keep several pens of that breed. The exercise should be a science rather than just throwing a few birds of the same breed in together. Doing it well is expensive, so I look upon selling the occasional setting of eggs more as of a way of offsetting the cost of what should be a pleasurable hobby, rather than trying to make a profit.
IMO, there's no way that someone who offers  eggs from a 101 different breeds can be doing the job properly. I've never bought eggs from E-bay but when on occasion I've spotted something that I fancy, I always check to see what else the vendor has up for sale. There are loads of chicken peddlers out there and it pays to steer well clear of them if you can.
 Selling hatching eggs can come with a lot of hassle and that's when the pleasure part of your hobby can disappear. That's why I don't do it, who needs the pressure for just a few quid? :chook:

HesterF

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Kent
  • HesterF
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #25 on: January 15, 2014, 10:44:40 am »
I've already worked out that the poultry will never really pay for itself - certainly never enough to make a living out of. It just seemed that since I've gone to the trouble of assembling some beautiful pure-breed birds, I'd be better off selling hatching eggs than eating eggs (because I sure as heck can't eat all the eggs myself so I need to do something with them). So when I look at the profits, I'm just looking at 'does this transaction make money?' i.e. if I sell six hatching eggs for 8 or whatever, am I bringing in more than I would if I just sold them at the school gate? And unless eBay is taking over 6, the answer is yes. So since I've already got all the birds, and they're all laying eggs, I've nothing to lose by trying. I may well throw in the towel for the sake of the hassle after a year and sell all the eggs via the local farm shop but it'd be nice to try first.

I'm not planning on showing my own birds (that really is a time consuming hassle) but I'm partly in it to support rare breeds and so it's better for those breeds as well if I can sell decent quality hatching eggs so other people have got them too. The only breed I've got more than one pen of is the West of England geese because they are so rare, it was worth getting two, relatively unrelated, top quality pairs so that I can breed unrelated pairs to sell on. But I'm hoping to raise them myself - they're too precious to send eggs off all over the place. With the others, most people don't seem to offer unrelated hatching eggs so I'm happy to have one pen and just make sure I don't end up with inbreeding myself in the next generation or two.

H

darkbrowneggs

  • Joined Aug 2010
    • The World is My Lobster
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #26 on: January 15, 2014, 11:12:11 am »

I sold half a doz egg on ebay and that was enough for me.  They were excellent eggs and they got a good hatch rate and left feedback to say.  Received ok or something similar.  Paid a very low price then pm'd me saying they would have as many as I could supply at that price.

It might be worth setting up your own website, especially for the West of England Geese.  It always worked well for me.


I had one for my Cuckoo Marans and one for my Cream Legbars plus a few odd ones for the Crested Ducks etc.


And you can often put adverts in the local papers free, but whether its worth waiting round for an hour for someone to turn up for half a doz eggs, who then wants to look at the stock and have a chat, may be worth taking into consideration.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2014, 11:13:57 am by darkbrowneggs »
To follow my travel journal see http://www.theworldismylobster.org.uk

For lots of info about Marans and how to breed and look after them see www.darkbrowneggs.info

Stereo

  • Joined Aug 2012
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #27 on: January 15, 2014, 12:01:51 pm »
That was the problem we had. Everyone wants to have a chat and I'm not particularly happy with strangers wanting a look around my pens which are tucked away down in a valley for a good reason.

It is hard getting good stock. I could sell CLB eggs on ebay tomorrow. I've got 3 excellent hens, 4 skyline crosses and 2 poorly marked unrelated cockerels (from ebay eggs). All the hens lay blue eggs and the chicks would look like CLBs but with too much brown. But I won't go down that route. I want to get more good hens and find a really good cockerel. Maybe a bit too honest as I'm sure most ebay sellers would just go for it.

Victorian Farmer

  • Guest
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #28 on: January 16, 2014, 11:09:01 am »
Hester f The west of England only go fertile for a few weeks i notice if we have eggs the first 2 or 3 weeks arnt fertile. The pilgrims are the same .The eggs i put up on e bay made 35 pound the silkies only made 10 pound .I think if the stock is right you get a good price .Remember you could sell 6 and then sell another from second or 3 rd chance .So you've sold 3 lots .Face book hatching eggs is good pr loved etc.

Stereo

  • Joined Aug 2012
Re: Selling hatching eggs
« Reply #29 on: January 16, 2014, 01:14:02 pm »
I suppose, thinking about it, this opens up a wider debate about breeds and quality. We know that over the years breeds have been changed by selection, mainly for showing and are not really what they were. I'm thinking of my Welsummers which are lovely birds but the strains I have are poor for meat and egg quantity but the eggs you do get are stunning to look at. But is that a useful bird? Looks nice and produces a few stunning eggs but is not the dual purpose bird most sources say it is.

I've got a pen on LS where the hens are excellent layers but not particularly well marked. The cockerel is nicely marked but not too meaty. What I suspect you will get is a load of really good laying offspring with OK markings and some cockerels that are barely worth raising. So this strain has gone more towards eggs. Should I not sell the eggs as the markings are poor? Would a buyer want super layers or do they want show quality feathering and less performance? Or are they more into the meat but wouldn't mind a few eggs from the hens?

Going back to the CLB's I mentioned before. I have all the ingredients to sell blue eggs that will look pretty much like a CLB, will lay a lot of blue eggs but will not make breed standard. If I was upfront about it, why shouldn't I sell them? Maybe people want a few cheap eggs to get blue laying mungrels. Is that wrong? Will they then line breed brothers and sisters of said mungrels and sell the eggs as show quality CLB eggs with stolen pictures?

I'm starting to see that breed quality is out of control. Everything and anything is going on out there. The problem is that anyone who has tried to get really good standards and a quantity of top quality unrelated birds together will know that it is a long and expensive business. This is a different business altogether than most of what goes on in ebay land. You might get a few sales at 3 per egg for your top quality lines but the guy charging 1 an egg for OK strains will outsell you 20 to 1.

 

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