Chickens, People, Planet | John Brunnquell Ph.D. | Egg Innovations
John Brunnquell Ph.D.
President & CEO
John Brunnquell, Ph.D. is the epitome of innovation and entrepreneurial leadership; he meets demands by being aware and vigilant in anticipating customers’ future values and needs. He’s a forward-looking person. Founding Egg Innovations demonstrates John’s visionary commitment as he built the organization by serving the mission: Chickens. People. Planet.
John is excellent at identifying early on what consumers are looking for within specialty eggs, recognizing the gaps and filling those needs. For example, he noticed the world was hungry for a lower cholesterol egg and found a natural solution during his Master’s research. This research earned him the patent: Low Cholesterol Eggs and Method of Selecting Same, which focused on a specific diet for hens to also benefit consumers by naturally lowering the cholesterol of eggs.
John’s extensive experience allows him to see the bigger picture as he looks for ways to evolve for the better. He grew up as a third-generation farmer and understands the day-to-day demands of farm life and animal care. With his experience on and off the farm, he has pioneered a better way to house and care for hens, ultimately producing a better egg. His groundbreaking endeavors are rooted in a passion for finding a better way to do things; this is a core value for him and his company. For John, finding a way to raise hens that embraced their natural preferences and behaviors opened the opportunity to lead the industry in a new way. Even when others in the industry believed this approach wasn’t cost-effective, John proved otherwise. He revolutionized the industry with the launch of Blue Sky Family Farms, working with family farmers to provide premium care to the flocks by letting chickens be chickens.
These experiences culminated in John earning his Ph.D. in avian ethology. John continuously applies his commitment and knowledge to set new standards and provide thought leadership that drives the industry forward.
Supporting & Mentoring
John supports budding entrepreneurs by providing the thought leadership and expertise in the industry to help others learn and grow in the face of challenges like avian influenza and managing business during a pandemic. “I’m always open to being a sounding board to others. I work with college students, serve on the alumni board of our fraternity, and am passionate about youth leadership development,” he says. “I’m also a part of the S2G investment network, which provides access to a multitude of portfolio companies that I’m routinely interacting with to learn from and share within a tremendous environment of mentorship and development.”
John sees the difference between good and great, is that great people never quit. John is relentless and always shows up! It may be cliché, but the lesson of two ears and one mouth and using them in those proportions has taught John the value of building a team, “I’ve learned that collaboration in a team environment gets you farther than thinking you know it all.” John shares the story of seven people touching an elephant, and all are asked to describe their experiences. Their accounts are vastly different because their experiences are different as one may be touching a tusk, the other a leg, the third the tail. While these descriptions were all different, no one’s perspective is wrong. “Recognizing others’ viewpoints and realizing we are all looking at the same thing, but I am looking at it through a different lens,” is John’s take away from this story. It’s this realization and perspective that allows John to bring people together for collaboration and growth.
Towards the Future
In the future, John wants to continue meeting consumers’ demand for quality, humanely produced eggs. “For us it means we go beyond cage-free and expand to ensure that our hens truly have the freedom to roam and express their natural tendencies. We are focused on high quality chicken care through our American Humane Certification, as well as earth-friendly practices through our farms’ regenerative care,” explains John. “We want to continue growing into new markets to meet the demand from consumers for our products and to support the Helpful Hens brand as it is the fastest-growing premium egg in the market.”
The eco-consciousness of their recently launched Helpful Hens is a beacon with a hen-led effort through regenerative farming practices. It catalyzes Egg Innovations’ ESG mission as the foundation for how they do business. Helpful Hens demonstrate they are committed to working in harmony with nature on a journey to leave the Earth better for the next generation, one egg at a time! Egg Innovations is offering the first to the market regeneratively farmed eggs through Helpful Hens.
Their family brand, Blue Sky Family Farms eggs, give consumers the chance to purchase high-quality premium eggs that are raised with family values as the care of their hens is the top priority: Farm. Flock. Family. Because hen health is their #1 priority, John and his team are committed to ensuring that they are cared for in a way that lets them express their five natural behaviors of perching, scratching, socializing, dust bathing, and pasturing. “We are committed that every single one of our eggs comes from a chicken that gets to live her best life because we believe: healthy, happy chickens lay delicious eggs. Our farms are a home to our farmers and our chickens. On the Farm. From our Flock. To your Family.”