The Hammond Family
Throughout Justin Hammond’s childhood, he recalled his grandfather aspiring to own a poultry farm. Although Hammond’s grandparents purchased farm land in the early 1990s, their dreams of building a poultry farm were put on hold when they were both diagnosed with cancer.
Once Hammond graduated from high school in the summer of 2007, he took his grandparents’ life-long dream and turned it into a reality by building an eight-house broiler farm. Later that same year, he received his first flock of birds and hired an employee, Julio Trigueros, to assist him with the day-to-day operations of the farm. Ever since then, Hammond has been growing chickens for Sanderson Farms, raising cattle and growing hay crops on what would have been his grandparent’s dream farm.
In 2014, Sanderson Farms’ Waco, Texas production division expanded, and Hammond took the opportunity to expand his own farm by adding four new broiler houses. With the addition of the new houses, he also took advantage of the opportunity to update technology in his houses such as expanding cool cells, adding more fans, converting to LED lighting and updating water treatment systems.
Hammond has been married to his wife, Katie, for 12 years, and they have two sons. In their spare time, the Hammonds enjoy team roping. Their sons are also very involved in baseball and the family travels throughout the country to watch them play.
Recognizing the importance of animal welfare and teaching their children the proper way to care for birds, the Hammonds treat growing chickens as a true family affair. “Animal welfare is very important to my family because it’s just part of growing birds or anything to do with animals, period,” said Hammond. “It provides safe, clean housing for our birds and it keeps them stress free.”
For Hammond, the most enjoyable aspect of growing chickens for Sanderson Farms is the people he has met along the way, including getting to know the company’s flock supervisors and their families. He also finds growing chickens for Sanderson Farms to be a rewarding career because he enjoys helping feed America and teaching his children about farming and ranching.
“Chicken matters because as a family, we grew up learning to take care of America and to take care of what it gives us,” said Hammond. “It helps to let my kids see that everything we do is for a purpose and it’s to feed America and feed other children like them. It’s such a great protein for the families of this world and it’s very cost productive. That’s why chicken matters to me.”