Cornish Rocks and Supermarket Cornish Hens

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by ESofVA, May 20, 2012.

  1. ESofVA

    ESofVA Songster

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    I have gained so much knowledge about chickens since joining here recently and it seems I have spent every free minute online reading and looking at pictures.
    My hubby and I wanted some chickens for eating as well as for eggs...not necessarily both from the same breed of chicken. My goal is to have both of those, too and in addition, they should be "pretty"...HEY!! if you are going to feed and enjoy them...they may as well be pretty, too! [​IMG] After all, I cannot overwinter but so many!

    We both love supermarket Cornish hens and I understand they are a cross between White Rocks and Cornish Hens.
    So...
    Why not Barred Rocks and Cornish??? Seems it would make no difference to me.

    I also read that you cannot get the same Cornish Hen as the supermarket by making the same cross.
    So...
    Why not?
    Do the hatcheries for supermarkets not use that cross?

    My daughter's mother-in-law worked in a chicken processing plant when she 1st started working and she told me they weighed all chickens that came through the separating line and regardless of breed, Anything near 1 lb was put in a lane? where those were pkged and sold as Cornish Hens.
    So...
    Anyone know anything about that???
    Thanks!


    Edit....Is this the wrong forum for this question? If so, where does it go?
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2012
  2. ESofVA

    ESofVA Songster

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    OK...so what is the 4 way cross and then, can you breed and raise your own???
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2012
  3. The "grandparent" stock, or the 4 birds that are used to make the two parent birds, which are used to make the eventual chick, which is sold as the CX are all patented by the huge poultry genetics corporations. HiSex, Bovan, DeKalb, ISA, Hubbard, and so on and so on. In some cases, they've put 50 years of selective breeding into these programs to produce the bird used in world wide agriculture, both layer and meat bird (broiler). This breeding is a billion dollar, international business, as poultry represents a trillion dollar, world wide industry.

    Short answer? This stuff is mostly patented and are trade secrets. Can we cook up your own pharmaceuticals and treat a disease? Not hardly. That's why some meds are $400 a capsule. It's the years of expensive research that must be re-couped. That's one way to look at it, perhaps.
     
  4. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Crowing

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    If you want the little Game Hens like you buy at the supermarket, those are Cornish Cross chicks butchered young, perhaps 4 weeks.

    You can breed any cross that you want to breed and see what you get. you won't get the equivalent of the commercial Cornish Cross, but you will get something and it will be edible.
     
  5. ESofVA

    ESofVA Songster

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    YEP! and I guess that is what I will do! Considering that info, that means I don't need to keep a Rock rooster but I will need to read about the other breeds more and make a suitable substitution. Meaning, I need to consider rate of growth and meat production 1st and then from those, select the breed I like best.
    I only plan to keep 8-9 chickens over winter. 1 rooster of undetermined breed as of yet, I expect 2 Cornish Hens, 1 Silver Sebright hen (and maybe 1 SSebright rooster), my Cochin hen, a Speckled Sussex hen and 2 more hens of undetermined breed yet. I have 25 chicks and have ordered 15 more. All extras will go in the freezer. (Maybe a Salmon Faverolle and a Buckeye hen or Australorp). Well, I still have a while before I need to make that decision!
    I can't mess it up...I can still eat my errors!
     

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