Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken owner, Ben Bostock, grew up on his family’s organic apple orchard in Hawke’s Bay and always had a passion for healthy, safe growing processes where there is control, meaning no chemicals, no antibiotics, no hormones and no genetic modification.
We spoke to Ben about how he has built a business with a vision to educate Kiwi consumers about where their food comes from and the benefits of eating organic chicken, and where welfare and quality are the key focus.
How did the Bostock’s start?
“While working at a meat export company in Auckland, I saw how far removed the sheep and beef farmers were from their markets that led me to see an opportunity to produce a product where I controlled the whole process from the pasture to the plate. I wanted a business where I could grow the food, grow the chickens and distribute them to market.
I had the perfect environment to grow organic chickens, my family’s organic property in Hawke’s Bay, where I knew the chickens could roam freely and live the good life.
I was determined to give organic chickens the best life possible, and I purchased some ‘Chalets’, state of the art, clean, spacious and solar powered shelters. They have a solar operated feeding system and windows that enable the chickens to roam freely outside. The chalets are also mobile and can regularly be moved to ensure the chickens have fresh grass all year round. I established Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken in June of 2014 with a vision, and I am proud that the business is kind on the environment and is economic and sustainable.”
What is the current product range and how is it different from other products?
“Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken is a certified organic, premium product. It’s the only mainstream organic chicken product on the market, so it stands out from the crowd. We can proudly say our organic chickens live twice as long as any conventional free range chicken and enjoy a better life because they are thirty times more free range than any other meat producing chicken and are antibiotic free, hormone free, GMO-free, chemical free, chlorine free and stress-free.
Our chicken is different because we focus on quality, not quantity and are committed to producing superior tasting chicken, which has been nurtured all the way.
There is a variety of Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken products including whole chickens, half chickens, breasts, thighs, drumsticks, wings, frames and livers.
What’s new with Bostock’s?
“We have tripled production since starting two years ago, to meet increased demand from across the country. When we started out, we had small orders and as word has spread they just keep coming.
We took a steady and targeted approach, made cold calls and focused on building strong direct supplier relationships. While I believed our organic free range chicken would become popular, ultimately it’s consumers who make the choice.
Remuera New World was one of the first to sell Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken. Butchery Manager Grant Harvey said the chickens are “flying off the shelf”.
“Customers are coming back and asking for more, they are telling us the chicken tastes like chicken, the meat has flavour and the bones are strong and not brittle, Bostock’s is always fresh and reliable,” said Harvey.”
Plans for the business?
“Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken is continually growing and developing to keep up with increasing consumer demand. We have recently moved properties to allow more room for growth and ensure our chickens have the ability to roam freely with fresh, green grass.”
Where can you buy Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken?
“Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chicken has nationwide distribution through a selection of specialty food stores, supermarket’s and even service stations. It is also available online at www.bostocksorganic.co.nz. You will find Bostock’s Organic Free Range Chickens in a lot of New World supermarkets around the country and some Countdown stores.”