SEAFORD, Del. -- Two farm families who grow chickens for Allen Harim, a leader in No Antibiotic Ever chicken on Delmarva, were honored as Outstanding Growers by the Delmarva Poultry Industry, Inc., on Tuesday at their annual banquet in Salisbury.
DPI honored Dale Phillips, of Georgetown, Del., a third-generation chicken grower whose father and grandfather also raised birds. His wife, Kathy, is involved in poultry too, working at the University of Delaware Lasher Laboratory to detect flock illnesses. They operate two chicken houses and care for up to 60,000 birds at a time. Dale Phillips also is active in the Delaware Farm Bureau. His farm, Gravel Hill, has been growing chickens since 1995 and in 2005, Dale took over for his grandfather and built a second house on the farm. They have two daughters, Ruby and Emily.
Also honored as an outstanding chicken grower was Chittle Saylor Jr., of Preston, Md., who also won in 2011. Chittle and his wife Jean raise up to 63,000 birds in each flock for Allen Harim in three houses on a Preston, Maryland farm they acquired in 1993, and they operate a poultry services business, too. They have three adult children, Ryan, Katie and Leslie, six grandchildren, and are faithful members of Harmony United Methodist Church.
"It's a good feeling, like you've really done something for the day," Chittle Saylor Jr. said of raising chickens. "It's kind of a joy to tend to them... and it's a hard job. People don't realize that - the hard work you have to put into it."
"We appreciate these outstanding growers and the work that goes into achieving this title," said Joe Moran, President and CEO of Allen Harim. "Growing chickens takes a lot of time and attention to detail. It's not easy and we recognize that. These growers have the passion that it takes to be successful."