BackYard Chickens › Member Pages › How To Raise & Process Chickens for Meat - Tips, Information, & Pictures

How To Raise & Process Chickens for Meat - Tips, Information, & Pictures

Chicken is one of the more popular meats in the world, and as people look for more ways to become self-sufficient, it's one of the easiest and economical ways to raise your own meat source. Chickens can be raised for meat in a much smaller area than other typical meat animals (say, a cow), some types provide very high feed conversion levels (more meat on less feed), and chickens can be amusing and fun to raise, even if they are destined to be the main guest at dinner. This page will cover common tips and information regarding raising poultry for meat consumption, but also come visit the Meat Birds Etc forum here on BYC to meet other people who enjoy raising chickens and other birds for the table!

 

Breeds

There are many breeds of chickens, ducks, geese and gamebirds that are utilized for meat consumption. This section will cover the more common varieties used, however, most all poultry and gamebirds can be used for meat.

 

Processing

While some people choose to have their home raised chickens processed at a facility, processing chickens at home is definitely a task that many can do. If you want to learn how to do one chicken or 100, here are some helpful links to get you started.

 

Eating/Cooking Home Raised Chicken

Most of the chicken raised for consumption in the US are Cornish Cross, processed between 30 days (Cornish Game Hen) and 7-8 weeks (most everything you see in the store that is chicken). Raising "dual purpose" chickens for meat, and even using older roosters and non-laying hens for meat does present the need for a new look at how to handle and cook for the best flavor and tenderness.

 

Feeding and Care

Meat chickens sometimes require special care and feeding depending on your goals.

 

  • What to feed (coming soon)
  • Alternative feeds (coming soon)
  • Feeding methods (coming soon)
  • Housing (coming soon)
  • Raising with other chickens (coming soon)

 

 

Illnesses

Meat breeds fall to illness just as any other breed, but we'll discuss some of the ailments that are more prevalent in meat breeds, and what can be done to treat and avoid them.

  • CHF (coming soon)
  • Green Meat (coming soon)
  • Leg Issues (coming soon)

 

 

Marketing

Many people find there is a market for home-raised chicken, this section will take a look at laws and tips on starting to sell your meat birds.

 

 

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BackYard Chickens › Member Pages › How To Raise & Process Chickens for Meat - Tips, Information, & Pictures