Nick’s Organic Farm

Farm/Brand HeadquartersPotomac, MD
Market AreaMD, VA, DC
Total Score1630

NOTE: Limited distribution as of July 2023 due to production difficulties, contact farm for more information.

They write: “Since 1979, we have been committed to constant improvement in our organic farming methods and to a strong relationship with our customers in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, and West Virginia. We aim to minimize off-farm inputs through our diversified and integrated farming system, which combines animals under management intensive grazing and an 8-12 year crop rotation to raise vegetables, hay, pastures, grains, seed and livestock. Our practices are designed to constantly improve the quality of our soilsãwhich for us is the basis of our organic farming system.”

“We grow our own grain and grind our own organic poultry feed from organic grain we grow and occasionally buy from other local organic farms. Our poultry receive this certified organic feed and graze on our organic pastures. We also sell our certified organic poultry feed to other organic farmers and to customers for their personal flocks.”

This farm is certified by the Real Organic Project.

TOTAL (possible score is 1700) 1630
Brands that have close daily control over their egg production receive the most points.
Ownership Structure
100Single farm
Brands that only produce organic products make the biggest investments — in time and money — in systems that benefit us all. Eggs sourced from a single operation receive the most points. Eggs of unclear origins and/or with poor oversight receives the fewest points.
Commitment to Organic Label
100Highly committed to organic label
Additional certifications, depending on the credibility of the label, can demonstrate a commitment beyond the organic standards.
Other Labels and Standards
100Real Organic Project (ROP)
Smaller flock sizes (the number of laying hens per housing structure) offer better animal welfare conditions.
Flock Size(s)
100Small flock sizes of 400-500 birds per coop
The best housing offers space for natural behaviors and legitimate access to the outdoors through adequate exits.
Hen Housing and Exit Areas
100Mobile coops with excellent exit areas
Adequate indoor spacing reduces stress and disease. With less crowding, birds can stretch their wings and more easily perform other natural behaviors.
Indoor Spacing
100Excellent spacing provided by mobile coops
High scoring brands provide enough space to allow each hen to fully utilize their outdoor area, and to perform instinctive behaviors without harming the environment.
Outdoor Spacing
100Excellent spacing provided by mobile coops, approximately. 348 square feet per hen
High quality outdoor access includes vegetation, soil, and ample opportunities to forage year-round.
Quality of Outdoor Access
100100% vegetation in outdoor area, rotated, well-maintained with other livestock
Birds that are introduced to the outdoors early are more accustomed to spending time outdoors without fear or stress.
Outdoor Access Timing
90Chicks are introduced between 2-4 weeks; later when pullets
Year-round access to perches, scratching areas, deep litter, novel foodstuffs, and dust bathing contribute to quality of life.
100Enrichments are provided outdoors, superb outdoor access
Chickens use their beaks to interact with the world. Authentic organic farmers account for this behavior, eschewing beak trimming.
80Ready-to-lay pullets are break trimmed, chicks are not
Raising chicks on farm or buying them from certified organic hatcheries shows dedication to organic production from start to finish.
Chicks and Pullets
90Purchases and raises some chicks on-farm and also purchases some ready-to-lay pullets
Brands that have low rates of deaths and utilize their spent hens for human consumption or similar score the highest.
Deaths, Culls, and Spent Hens
90Death rate below 5%, spent hens used for stew hens
Brands that closely monitor and manage health of soil, native species, and water quality receive the most points.
Environmental Impacts
100Diversified farm, manure composted; steps taken for environmental sustainability, rotates daily
Feed Sourcing100Grows 100% of feed on farm
Brands that score well here go above and beyond to ensure the highest animal welfare, taking into consideration their hens’ safety and cleanliness, natural behavior, and stress levels.
Animal Welfare
80Excellent animal welfare
Cornucopia believes you have a right to transparency. Top brands share information with Cornucopia via a survey and cooperate with our own independent investigations.
100Superb transparency
Brands do not receive points, but this information is offered for people with soy and/or gluten allergies.
Soy free and/or gluten free?
Not soy free but hens are not fed wheat products
Brands do not receive points, but are invited to submit the name of their Accredited Organic Certifier (suppliers may have different certifiers).
Organic Certifier (non-scoring)
Maryland Department of Agriculture
Extra credit is offered for various practices that go above-and-beyond in some form.
Extra Credit