BLACKFOOT, Idaho - A Blackfoot man has an unusual business: raising bunnies on a bus. Jared Martin was granted a conditional-use permit by Bingham County to allow up to 1,500 rabbits on his property for farming.
Martin had rabbits for pets as a kid, as he got older, he learned he could turn his passion into a business.
"I figured might as well start farming with the rabbits instead of the food crop," said Martin on Monday.
Blink your eyes for a moment as you drive through Moreland, and you might miss the full-size school bus in Martin's front yard. It's the bunny bus, where he keeps about 50 rabbit pens, for now. Soon with his new permit, he'll have 1,500 rabbits on his property.
"I figured it's a good place to put kits (baby rabbits) for customers to come through. Right now, I'm using it for production. But come around Easter time there will be nothing but kits for customers. It'll be a nice clean environment," said Martin.
Customers will be able to enter the bus, walk through the aisle and pick out their bunnies.
Martin said his permit is just a stepping stone to grow his business.
"There's not enough market locally for meat or pets to be able to make a living, so I have to produce enough numbers where I can ship them off to the processor, and it's all meat rabbits for the most part," said Martin.
Right now Martin's rabbits are shipped to California for their meat. Martin said rabbit meat tastes similar to chicken and is easy on the stomach.
"I'd say it tastes pretty much like a white meat. Rabbit meat is actually a lot better for you it's got a lot more vitamins in it and a lot more minerals. The protein are much higher and the fat levels are non existent and most of the meat you buy in the store is about 40 percent water weight and rabbits are about 10 percent so you're getting a lot more meat out of it," said Martin.
Martin also sells rabbits as pets. He also sells feed and poultry. He can be reached at (208) 313-8493.