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Family hatchery celebrated for family legacy, and local economic impact

From Hoover’s Hatchery Website

Hoover’s Hatchery is a well-recognized and highly respected business success story for the family-owned hatchery in Rudd, Iowa.

Hoover’s was founded by Bob and Helen Hoover in 1944, and Mary Halstead has been a part of Hoover’s Hatchery for more than forty years.

Halstead started as a part-time employee and was responsible for cleaning and packaging eggs, and later worked her way into the ownership of the company.

Despite the ownership transition, the hatchery’s name did not change. “It’s a legend, and it’s well known in the industry. As far as I’m concerned, we’ll always be Hoover’s Hatchery,” says Halstead.

Today, Mary’s son, Tony Halstead, is the managing partner of Hoover’s Hatchery, and Mary still works at the hatchery daily.

Tony and some local business partners have embraced e-commerce and grown the business through online sales, but stay true to the core customer base of local farmers and phone-in and catalog orders.

Online sales have opened new markets for Hoover’s, and today the hatchery sells thousands of birds weekly and have 30 full-time employees and up to 60 part-time employees.

Hoover’s has customers in all 48 continental states, but still take care of many local customers right at home in Floyd County.

The company’s innovative business model and positive impacts on the local community have earned the hatchery Iowa Farm Bureau’s Renew Rural Iowa (RRIA) Entrepreneur Award.

Jay Matthews, Floyd County Farm Bureau president, says Hoover’s is highly respected in the agriculture community for its longevity and many contributions to the local community.

Matthews noted by selling birds locally, Hoover’s have helped many small farmers get started raising poultry.

“I’ve been in Floyd County for 12 years and quickly learned about the success and positive impact of Hoover’s, and I’m a customer, too,” says Matthews.