Innovation has no age requirement. Case in point: 12-year-old Vivian Isabella Hayes of V. Isabella’s Sassy Chickens. This entrepreneur has made a name for herself selling farm-fresh eggs from her nearly 20 chickens at Food Matters Market in Brevard.
Vivian got started after her father, Chef Adam Hayes of Canyon Kitchen in Sapphire, purchased chickens. The family realized that egg production exceeded storage space, and Vivian hatched her idea. She quickly settled on the name of her new business venture: “I thought of ‘sassy,’ because they are!”
Vivian and her sassy chickens have made a splash at the market, where customers can pick up a dozen multi-colored eggs from breeds like Rhode Island Reds and Ameraucanas. Each dozen is splashed with vibrant blues and earthy browns in just the right proportion. Vivian even created the logo on the cartons.
“Every day is a challenge because there’s so much to do,” Vivian says. She spends her mornings collecting eggs, checking food and water, and letting the chickens out to free range; in the evening, she puts them back in their pen with the help of Elsa, her Great Pyrenees.
Caring for the chickens is a family affair, with mom, dad, and Vivian’s little brother (who receives $5 for pitching in) helping when she goes out of town. Vivian’s mom also assists with the invoicing and bank deposits. And the chickens, with given names that include Moonshine and Transformer, are “like best friends,” according to Vivian.
Vivian’s passion for her chickens means she provides something else for her customers: quality. “I noticed I don’t like grocery store eggs as much as I do the fresh eggs,” she says. “There’s a big difference.”
Chick it Out
V. Isabella’s Sassy Chickens
Eggs available at Food Matters Market in Brevard.
1 Market St.