Friday, January 17, 2014

My Chickens are Meat Eaters....and I'm Proud of it

I just saw a commercial for one of the big name chicken companies that kind of made me laugh. They were promoting the fact that they feed their chickens a strict vegetarian diet. Before I had chickens, that probably would have made sense to me, and I probably would have been more inclined to buy chicken from that brand. But as I come upon my one year mark of raising chickens, I hear something like that and it's just crazy to even think about raising my flock on a vegetarian diet! Chickens are not natural vegetarians. One of the best things about having chickens is all the bugs they eat. Mosquitoes don't stand a chance in my yard....and watch out if a field mouse tries to find refuge near them!

The ladies searching for bugs

The chickens above are my egg layers. We give them feed every day, but we let them forage as much as possible. It's good for them to find food on their own and they enjoy it. But it also helps keep my feed costs down, which makes my egg sales more profitable. I mean, I'm not getting rich off of them or anything and I have a small flock which has a completely different regimen and economic drivers. But beyond my egg layers, my meat birds also have their fair share of protein.

 We supplement feed and foraging with our kitchen scraps.

Kitchen scraps mixed with yogurt
We send most of our kitchen scraps out to the birds. I avoid potatoes and chicken. Potatoes could be toxic to them (there's a lot of mixed opinions out there) and I just can't wrap my head around feeding them chicken! I'm not against anyone else doing it-it just kind of weirds me out. Their food of choice? Pork. They love pork in all forms, especially bacon and sausage. (Who can blame them?)

So back to this commercial.....They claim their vegetarian diet produces tender and juicy chicken. I'm certainly no scientist, but I can tell you our chicken is quite tender and juicy!

Chicken breast stuffed with spinach and goat cheese
Our turkeys got the same treatment, and everyone raved over how delicious Tom Hanksgiving was!

The commercial also said that none of their chickens receive hormone treatments. Guess what? Hormone use in poultry was banned in the United States in the 1950s!

So I guess I'm saying if eating vegetarian chicken makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, awesome. That's the best part of our food have all these choices. I'm just offering a different viewpoint of vegetarian chickens.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

Where's all the pictures of watermelons? :)

I love stories about the ladies.