It’s a tremendous relief to reach this Thanksgiving season. While it’s typical for our year to feel somewhat like a mountain climb to the Thanksgiving peak, the relief is heightened this year after the constant worry about avian influenza (“bird flu”). As influenza continued to impact farms both big and small, across all corners of the country, it was hard to shake a nagging sense of worry. Now, we can feel a deep gratitude to approach the Thanksgiving season with the relief of having been spared.

I often think of our Thanksgiving season much like the harvest push for a vegetable, fruit, or crop farmer. Around on our farm, we spend most of the year planning and planting (in our case, brooding poults) and tending closely to make sure all our flocks do well. This year, we did it all with the shadow of a proverbial hail storm. We tried to follow all the best practices to avoid avian influenza, but we also stayed the course with our tried-and-true free-range practices. Coincidentally, this year’s beautiful extended autumn gave our birds the best fall days outside I can recall. It was picture perfect. Our flocks have all done great and we’ve made it to that final stretch of field to harvest.

Now that we’re here, the reward is knowing that our care and efforts nourish families and holiday traditions. Everybody on our team here is busy hustling on final preparations for our TurkeyFest Days: stocking shelves, loading trucks, taking turkey orders, and making sure we have enough brining spice. It’s our time to shine and we look forward to celebrating the season with all of you.

It’s sincerely the joy of our work to know you see the difference in our way of farming. Whether we see you here on the farm, or you find our Ferndale Market turkey at a store near you, we thank you for your support and wish you a blessed Thanksgiving.