By Jason and Tracy Ramsdell, 2nd Generation Egg Farmer. Dakota Layers Family Farm, Flandreau, SD.
We are a pretty tough breed here in eastern South Dakota. With record heat in the summer and blizzards in the winter, we have to be. Life doesn’t stop during harsh weather. Particularly when you are part of the agriculture community like we are.
But, as general manager of Dakota Layers, a family-owned egg farm in Flandreau, I couldn’t be more “prairie proud” to be a member of this community! Even during our frigid winters and blistering-hot summers, we check each of the hens in our care daily, making sure the water lines are delivering the right amount of water and the feed troughs are filled. I love this work and I can’t imagine doing anything else.
I’m a second-generation egg farmer, and sixth-generation farmer. But this way of life was new to my wife Tracy when I joined Dakota Layers full-time in 2012. Tracy, a journalist by training (and a foodie by birth), is our marketing director and learned this business from the ground up. To say she’s passionate about this work would be putting it lightly. I’m also starting to see the agriculture spark in the eyes of my children, too. Jett and Nora love being around the birds. The fact that Tracy and I can involve our children in our work makes us feel blessed beyond belief.
As egg farmers, Easter means a lot to us. It’s not only because, for so many families, Easter equals eggs, but it’s also due to the sense of community during the Easter season. We love the idea of Americans coming together to celebrate family, a new season, and the new life that comes with spring.
Knowing families are enjoying our eggs means so much to us. It makes us “prairie proud” not only at Easter but every day to be South Dakotans, members of the agriculture community, and Americans.