Jewish egg farming boomed in the
years after World War II as Holocaust
survivors tried their hands at rural life.
At one point, 12,000 small-flock, fam-ily-owned egg farms dotted the state.
By 1955, Jersey produced more than
485 million eggs, according to the state
Department of Agriculture.
IN THE ENSUING DECADES, most of
the Jews and other immigrant farmers moved on to other livelihoods. Not
so the Puglisis. After settling in Monmouth County, Emmanuel Puglisi met
Mary, a young woman from Naples, Italy, working in the local hatchery. They
soon married and began raising a brood
of their own.
John, Michael and Paul were born on
the farm and early on learned the rigors
of raising chickens and selling eggs. “It’s a
When the boys were teenagers, their
father asked each if he was interested in
staying in the business. They all agreed
to give it a go. John and Michael graduated college, Paul finished high school,
and one by one they became partners.
The farm has 50 employees—
including six third-generation Puglisis—and
has expanded to 17 acres, anchored by a
small red-brick office building adjacent
to the production and warehouse areas.