I just read a short but interesting article on the definitions found on egg cartons.
People want to know how their eggs are produced and what kind of living conditions the chickens are subjected to. I agree that this information is very important and questions should be asked. Every animal has certain requirements for a healthy and satisfying life and chickens are no exception. A chicken who is raised in such a way as to be active, healthy and content will provide the best nutrition for the people who consume their meat and eggs.
A chicken who is unhealthy or stressed out will produce a lot of stress hormones just as people do- and these hormones are passed along through the eggs and meat to our dinner table. It doesn’t take a lot to imagine that this would not be as beneficial to our bodies than what happy, stress free chickens have to offer.
So what are we doing to keep our birds healthy and contented? We give them a very safe shelter at night and then let them go wherever they need to go during the day. Sure we lose a lot of chickens (which in return is very expensive), but the overall happiness of the flock is worth it.
Animals are also a product of what they eat. You feed chickens a healthy food, they make healthy meat and eggs. None of that cheap seed meal based food imported from China for the birds on our ranch! We try to grow as much healthy, pesticide free food as we can for them. Next, we sprout healthy grains that are not only green but highly nutrient dense. Finally, we supplement all that free ranging, bug eating behavior with the best packaged grain that we can afford making sure that they have enough healthy calories to stay active during the day and warm at night.
So I guess our hens are “free ranged” plus!
(like us on Facebook at Clerici Chicken Ranch for updates and availabilities)
- Pasture-Raised vs. Industrial Organic: An Egg-cellent Stakeholder Engagement Lesson (triplepundit.com)
- Chicken Egg Color (flyingheartcountry.wordpress.com)
- Europe Bans Battery-Cage Eggs (planetsave.com)
- Free Run, Free Range, Cage Free-What Does It All Mean? (plowinginpearls.com)