There are duos that just belong together; peanut butter and jelly, cookies and milk, bacon and eggs. T.C. Eggington’s and Hickman’s Family Farms are just another example of two things that belong together. Because what else does a top notch, family owned restaurant need but a first class, family owned egg farm to supply their namesake food? T.C. Eggington’s has been a customer of Hickman’s Family Farms since T.C. Eggington’s opened their doors in 1985. The two Arizona grown family businesses have not only a successful business relationship, but have fostered a great friendship as well.
Sharman Hickman, part of the current Hickman generation, reminisced about her time spent with T.C. Eggington’s owners, Thom and Kathy. “I have the custom made skillet from the T.C. Eggington’s 30th anniversary party hanging in my office!” Sharman shared.
Sharman has delivered eggs personally to T.C. Eggington’s over the years. She said that Thom has always insisted on only the freshest eggs, no matter what it took. And it sometimes took a 3am drive from her home in North Central, to the farm in Buckeye, straight to T.C. Eggington’s in Mesa. With nearly 8,000 eggs ordered a week, this was no small feat! While this early morning task was sometimes taxing, Sharman always appreciated how important it was to Thom that he served only the best to his customers.
In addition to having a business relationship, T.C. Eggington’s and Hickman’s Family Farms has also partnered to help our community. Together they “hatched” the idea for the PJ’s & Eggs fundraiser benefiting the Arizona Children’s Foundation which supplies foster children with much needed comfort during difficult transitions. Customers of T.C. Eggington’s were asked to come dine and donate new children’s pajamas, which were then provided to foster children who often arrive at their foster home with only the clothes on their backs. Sharman Hickman has been present at the event many times as “Funky” the Chicken – a full size costume of the Hickman’s logo.
Founded in 1944, Hickman’s Family Farms is currently under the third generation’s care with the fourth generation being groomed for the future of the business. As the Hickman family has grown, so has their business and their plans for the future. Currently, Hickman’s is collecting recycled plastic from the City of Phoenix to create their egg cartons – an efficiently responsible step towards a green future. There is also an emphasis on continuing to move the company in a green direction by investing in research and development of cage free and grass fed eggs, increased humane conditions for animals, and community outreach through charity work and prison worker programs. This program offers job skills and references for inmates at local prisons to assist in breaking the cycle of re-offending by offering them a job skill that can be put to use after release.
Not much has changed in the 34 year relationship; T.C. Eggington’s is still a proud customer of Hickman’s Family Farms…and Thom still insists on the freshest eggs available. The only thing that has changed is who is delivering those fresh eggs at the crack of dawn.