Layena Feed vs. Southern States 16% Layer

dirtsaver

Songster
9 Years
Mar 20, 2010
566
11
166
Northern Kentucky
We had been unhappy with the Layena Crumbles for a while now. Seems every bag had at least a large coffee can or two of dust in it,sometimes more. We also noticed a lot of sneezing from several of the girls while they were eating(only when eating...they were not sick). The eggs did have very thick and hard shells and looked good but the girls didn't have the "shine" they used to have. We figured it was time to try another feed!

Being a former Southern States employee I decided to try their 16% All-grain Layer Crumble. We are well into the second bag and I can report a major difference. Very little dust(with crumbles you always expect some dust in the mix) and I have not heard a sneeze at the feeder in a month now. The eggshells are a bit thinner but still very solid and the look/flavor of the eggs is still very good. We keep oyster shell and Grani-grit free choice if they need it. And the girls really like the SS feed. They had both offered side by side and the Layena was ignored!

Another thing we noticed about the Southern States feed was the smell. It really smelled fresher than the Layena! More like freshly ground feed I was used to as a kid.

The girls are looking very healthy and we are happy with the results.

An added bonus....Layena is up to $17.00/50lb in our area. Southern States 16% All-grain crumbles is under $13.00/50lb .
 

Attila the Hen

Songster
9 Years
Nov 6, 2010
830
226
217
Blue Ridge GA
Thanks for the post. I just bought Soutern States feed yesterday because I went to another feed store where they recommended it. It's hard to know what is best and I don't have your childhood experience to comare.
 

dirtsaver

Songster
9 Years
Mar 20, 2010
566
11
166
Northern Kentucky
Attila I grew up going to the mill with my uncle and grandpa almost every Saturday. It was neat to hang out and listen to the old-timers swap tales...and pocket knives.

Something I failed to mention in the OP was about the freshness. As far as I know Southern States Stores get feed shipments either once or twice a week straight from their own feed mills. I know all the SS stores in my area got feed twice a week through the 10+ years I worked for them. The Tractor Supply store we got the Layena just got pallets of feed(40 or 50 bags) shipped in and the date codes showed that sometimes the feed was a couple of months old by the time we bought it. Makes a big difference!
 

3loadsofpink

Hatching
9 Years
Apr 10, 2010
2
0
6
thk u for the info!! just bought our first batch of chick food and 2hrs later I was getting all anxious I did the right thing...$ was my deciding factor.
 

dirtsaver

Songster
9 Years
Mar 20, 2010
566
11
166
Northern Kentucky
Quote:pink we all are counting pennies these days and part of that is getting quality for the $$$ spent. I have been "penny wise and pound foolish more times than I'd like to admit. But I do have the benefit of 50 years of experience with Southern States feeds for cattle and hogs. We were buying the Layena because it seemed so highly touted on most back-yard chicken forums,and because Tractor Supply was closer and easier to get to than Southern States. When we started having dust issues(and Layena went up to $17.00/50lbs) I was forced to make changes. Thankfully the alternative is better quality AND cheaper.

Larry
 
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kla37

Songster
9 Years
Apr 18, 2010
2,162
20
173
Hillsborough, NC USA
It was interesting to read this post, I just tried the Purina 60 day challenge and it sucked. The chickens barely touched it for a week, and it took them forever to go through a bag of it. I'm switching back to SS brand this week. I also didn't get many eggs at all, but that was probably because of the winter darkness thing. But I think my girls will be very happy to have their old feed back!
 

lotzahenz

Songster
11 Years
Aug 28, 2008
1,242
12
163
Lexington, Kentucky
I MUCH prefer the SS brand, but I like the one that has animal by-products in it, and find that my birds look and lay much better with it. If it is cheaper and fresher that makes switching easy. I am still a firm believer that since Chickens are omnivores, they need the meat products. They NEVER use any ruminant meal or meat, so the mad cow scare is nil. Plus, SS is farmer owned! That is a plus to me. OH, and the staff at ours are all nice and helpful and the store is pleasant with a garden center and all. I think we should all make sure there is a DATE on the feed sack, to ensure it is fresh. Old feed does not have the same nutrients as new feed. BUT, the pink bags are cute!
 

dirtsaver

Songster
9 Years
Mar 20, 2010
566
11
166
Northern Kentucky
Quote:lotza we feed just enough table scraps to make up for the "all-grain" mix,plus our chickens free-range several hours every day and you should see what they find! Frogs,mice,worms,they almost caught a chipmunk this summer. Talk about a cartoon! And the batteries in the video camera were dead!

As for the "friendly employees" at your SS store, when I worked for SS in the 1980's-90's I had chance to meet a lot of the staff at Lexington,Richmond and several other stores over your way as well as across the state. I think all of us that worked at SS considered the customers as family and friends. I only met a couple of unpleasant SS staff and they did not hang around very long!

Larry
 

dirtsaver

Songster
9 Years
Mar 20, 2010
566
11
166
Northern Kentucky
Quote:Med that was another thing Eva and I noticed when we switched to the Southern States feed. The chickens went after it like they had not been feed in weeks,nevermind their feeder was never allowed to go empty!
 
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