With all the doom and gloom about the future of the book industry, it can feel like book sellers and publishers are being led, like lambs — or chickens — to the slaughter.
Which gave us an idea here at Chelsea Green: Pluck ’em!
Why limit ourselves to publishing books about sustainability and regeneration and small-scale farming? Why not diversify our holdings? Spread our wings, so to speak.
Our idea is a combined mobile poultry processor and bookmobile. Wait, I can explain.
Sure this move could ruffle some feathers in the book-publishing world (or leave us with egg on our face), but that’s part of Chelsea Green’s mission and joie de vivre. 
The inspiration for our mobile bookstore and poultry plucker was inspired by a notice issued today from the Vermont Agency of Agriculture. It turns out the state is looking to offload its successful “mobile poultry processing unit.”
Their press release read:
Calling all Vermont meat producers and processors! The Vermont Agency of Agriculture Mobile Poultry Processing Unit is currently available for purchase. The mobile unit, which was the first of its kind for farmers to process poultry under state inspection right on the farm, has been a huge success in developing Vermont’s poultry industry. With the market for locally produced poultry and rabbit continuing to rise, this piece of infrastructure offers a great business opportunity.
The mobile unit has a daily processing capacity of 250 chickens or 100 turkeys, with two operators. It can be docked either at farms or at fairgrounds across the state.
The mobile unit is currently listed for sale at http://www.auctionsinternational.com/item.cgi?show_item=0000077280. There will be an open house on Wednesday, January 11, 2012 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the north end of the Waterbury State Complex parking lot. To RSVP for the open house, please contact Chelsea Bardot Lewis at 802-828-3360 or [email protected] The bidding process closes at 6:00 p.m. on January 13, 2012.
What better way to put into practice what we preach? By bringing fresh, local meat from small-scale farmers directly to market we’d put more money into the pockets of local farmers and growers rather than giant agri-business; we’d also help put a chicken in every pot.
The attached bookmobile would allow farmers and their guests to browse some of our inspiring food and farming titles – like Harvey Ussery’s The Small-Scale Poultry Flock: An All-Natural Approach to Raising Chickens and Other Fowl for Home and Market Growers  — while we process the poultry. Or whatever small farm animal is on the menu.
I can see the slogan now: “We Chop, While You Shop.”