Do I Really Need Expensive, Organic, Non-GMO Feed?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by thecreekhouse, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. thecreekhouse

    thecreekhouse Songster

    Feb 26, 2015
    East Tennessee
    I have a flock of six pullets, age 4-8 months. A buff Ameracauna, a splash Ameracauna, a black Ameracauna, an Olive Egger, a Silkie and a huge Cochin. I have been feeding them Purina crumbles but I know that many BYC members feed something like Scratch & Peck’s organic, non-GMO, corn-free feed. My question is, are there actually benefits to spending the extra money on this type of high end feed? I don’t need corn-free feed (and don’t really understand why chickens would need it) because I actually feed my chickens cracked corn as a treat. Do you buy one of the more expensive, high end feeds? If so, why? Or do you stick with something like a Purina feed? How come? Thanks for any and all feedback.
  2. RodNTN

    RodNTN Hatchaolic

    May 22, 2013
    The Volunteer State
    My Coop
    The simple answer is: no :) I've been feeding Purina for years, and not even once has a problem arisen from lack of nutrition. And do I have proof that chickens can live without organic feed? Yep, my 11 year old hen Jewel :D
    Some folks may disagree with me, and that's fine. Everybody has their opinion, but how healthy your chickens are mostly depends on the care they receive. You can keep your chickens in factory farm conditions, treat them like egg making machines, and feed them organic feed... they might live a few years. Or you can treat your girls with care, spend time with them, spoil them with fruits and veggies, and feed them Purina (or any non organic feed)- you can expect those girls to live a lot longer then the ones who are kept solely for eggs.
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
  3. Shamo Hybrid

    Shamo Hybrid Songster

    Jun 6, 2018
    I just pick up whatever's on sale..... a lot of the folks in here likes to spoil their chicken, to each their own. I suppose chickens are an extension of ourselves.
  4. rjohns39

    rjohns39 Addict

    Aug 20, 2015
    Smith County, TN
    It's an individual or potentially a business decision. Me I feed a Non-GMO feed, am not particularly concerned with Organic, but do want to know where my ingredients come from and what their neighbors are doing. I don't really have an issue with genetically modified plants, what I do have is an issue with feeding my birds even trace amounts of roundup or Raid and by proxy eating it myself.

    I'm not getting the feed I want right now, but it's still decent and runs me $12.00 for 50 pounds. I need to make the 2 hour trip to KY to check out the Amish mill. They sell a way better quality feed for $10.50 for 50 pounds. When the local co-op was milling my feed to my specs, it was $11.70 for 50 pounds.
  5. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Crowing

    Jul 3, 2016
    Pac NW
    My Coop
    I feed organic because I eat organic when I can, so "growing" my own eggs is part of that.
  6. BantyChooks

    BantyChooks Pullarius

    Aug 1, 2015
    My Coop
    I buy a regular layer feed from a local brand. It's cheap, which is why I get it. I don't think it's sub-par: the chickens eat it willingly, and it always smells fresh.

    I free range in summers, so any possible dietary imbalances would have a chance to correct themselves there. I see no need for paying exorbitant amounts of money for a possible benefit. Also, I don't keep most of my birds longer than a few years.
    puffypoo, PattyNH, R2elk and 3 others like this.
  7. Fishkeeper

    Fishkeeper Songster

    Oct 30, 2017
    Central Texas
    GMOs are NOT bad. The companies are sketchy, but GMOs themselves have a bad rap for no real reason. GMO wheat is generally made to be, say, more resistant to herbicides.
    Organic is preferable but not required.
  8. 9SpiceyChickens

    9SpiceyChickens Crowing

    Jul 24, 2018
    In the coop, Northern CA
    I buy Purina Layena- It works for my girls just great!
    Your feed is fine!
    Occasionally, if the shells get kinda weak, I feed them their shells back to them.

    Recipe for the best chicken treats ever-

    Eggs shells (Optional, must be from the same flock that laid the eggs)

    Step 1-
    Empty tomatoes

    step 2- Stuff tomatoes with mealworms and eggshells(Optional)

    Step 3- Feed to flock!!!
    HennyPenny2019, puffypoo and rjohns39 like this.
  9. Compost King

    Compost King Crowing

    Apr 19, 2018
    North Carolina
    I personally do not like GMO types of foods because they could be covered in Herbicides, inside and out. Yep even on the inside with certain plants as the plants grow after being hit with Round Up. Even with me not being fond of the abuse of herbicides in agriculture and the environmental damages it causes, I will never pay more for non GMO feed. I don't even get non GMO food for myself. Much of these organic, Non GMO etc etc labeling is to get people to part with even more of their money for something they do not need. Some people do not mind spending more because they sleep easier at night doing what is best for their chickens. It's all up to you what you choose to do. There is no right or wrong answer on what you prefer to buy to feed your chickens... unless its layer feed for your brooder feeders or medicated starter grower for your laying hens... I guess that would be wrong.
    aart, DobieLover, puffypoo and 2 others like this.
  10. Compost King

    Compost King Crowing

    Apr 19, 2018
    North Carolina
    When I grow my own Tomatoes often they end up with mealworms lol (or some other pest) I got to the point where I figured I might as well invite the pests and feed all my tomatoes to the chickens.

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