When we were researching chickens, we quickly learned that the most important components of chicken tending are shelter, food and water. We’ve talked about the chicken coop we built. We have a post in the works about the water situation, so today I wanted to talk about chicken feed.
Most of the chicken feed brands at our local feed store are produced by Purina and their ilk. Yep, even the organic ones! I mean, we don’t even feed our dogs and cats Purina, and they certainly don’t make breakfast. Eggs are as good as the feed that goes into the chicken (garbage in, garbage out). We embarked on this chicken-rearing adventure for the sake of better food, so it seemed contrary to serve Purina at the breakfast table. So we started looking for other options.
We considered making our own chicken food. I wasn’t excited about the extra work of mixing the feed, but I’d resigned myself to it since we couldn’t find a better alternative. I wanted to feel like we were feeding the chickens real food. Thankfully, before our chicks arrived in our home, we discovered a local feed mill that produces organic, soy-free, corn-free, non-GMO chicken feed.
The grains are sustainably grown and milled in Washington, and we can buy the feed conveniently at our local food co-op. The ingredients are not cooked into pellets or crumbles, like most commercial chicken feed. It is easily recognized as real food. If not for the fish meal, I could boil up a pot of it and it would strongly resemble something I’d feed my family for breakfast.
The girls are crazy about it, too. Granted, chickens will joyfully eat nearly anything, like tiny feathered goats. They seem to extra-love their Scratch & Peck, though. We free-range them as much as possible, but it’s a relief to know that they have access to good food even when they’re cooped up.
We were in no way compensated for writing this. I would love some free chicken food, but we have never received any. All opinions are our own.