Obscure ingredient lists on commerical feeds

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by minichic, Feb 2, 2011.

  1. minichic

    minichic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 13, 2010
    Saratoga County, NY
    I'm expecting my new peeps (first time chicken momma) next month. In researching feeds I am shocked and dismayed at the commercial feeds available to me locally. Almost all had similar ingredients lists: grain products, followed by plant protein products, followed by grain by-products and then the usual vitamin/mineral mix. Huh? What exactly would "grain products" be? Corn, oats, barley (all or some, and is the recipe the same all the time)? I find this really confusing. The whole impetus behind becoming a chicken momma was to have the healthiest hens, and thus healthiest eggs, I can produce. Anyone have any inside info on these obscure ingredients. Seems to me the commerical feed producers have allowed themselve an awful lot of wiggleroom.
  2. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    I would imagine that a lot of the "products" and "by-products" would be the things left over from making other products. The hulls and chaff and other things removed to make flours from various grains. Offer lots of leftover fruit and veg, mealworms/crickets, and time outside to forage. There are plenty of people on here that raise very healthy chickens on commercial feed. Part of what makes commercial eggs undesirable isn't the food they feed, it's the treatment. Good old fashioned exercise, foraging, and exercise alone will provide a healthier egg and chicken. Good luck and have fun!
  3. the-bird-man

    the-bird-man Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 24, 2010
    land of the sun
    i feel the same! i would like to know everything that is in the feed but they just say grain product and stuff like that... it drives me nuts. i will soon be buying my feed from a feed mill so i can know what i am feeding my girls [​IMG]
  4. minichic

    minichic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 13, 2010
    Saratoga County, NY
    Thanks for the replies. I'm just having hard time justifying spending $15 on a bag of vitamin coated mill sweepings. Sort of the equivalent of giving my dogs Dog Chow (blech!) I work at a pet wellness center (for dogs and cats) so I'm all about health and wellness when it comes to my animals. I want the best I can give the new chicks. Yes, they will have access to outdoors to forage, exercise and partake of the sunshine and fresh air and I'm sure as a new chicken momma I'll be tossing them treats from the kitchen too.
  5. Organics North

    Organics North Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 30, 2009
    Wisconsin Northwoods

    I do not understand how the industry does not see this!

    There are some exceptional brands of bagged feed, but the price is high especially if not in their region. Finding a local source a feed mill so at least you know what goes in is a good option too.

    OR your can mix your own feed like many of us do. It is time consuming and learning "chicken nutrition" needs to become a hobby. The feed you mix is not nessesarly cheaper, but you can put in it what YOU want to feed your back yard flock, one can make it as non commercial as you like!

  6. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

    Jun 1, 2009
    Grain Products-
    Barley, Corn, oats, Wheat, Rice and Rye

    Processed Grain By-Products-
    Brewers Dried Grains, Distillers Dried Grains, Corn Gluten Feed, Wheat Millings, Bran (rice and wheat)

    Plant Protein Products-

    Cottonseed meal, Linseed meal, Soybean meal, Soybeans (heat processed), Yeast (cultured)

    Animal Protein Products-

    Fish meal, Hydrolyzed Poultry feather meal, Meat meal, Dried whole milk, Skimmed milk, Dried whey

    Forage Products-

    Alfalfa meal (dehydrated or sun-cured), Grass hay (Species name included), Lespedeza meal

    Last edited: Feb 3, 2011
  7. minichic

    minichic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 13, 2010
    Saratoga County, NY
    Chris09 - Thanks for the decoding for me! Now would it really take up that much more room on the feed bag tag to actually say what was in the feed? Ugh! Oh wait, we might not buy it if we actually knew what was in it!

    ON - I thought about mixing my own, but I'm only getting 8 girls and buying the raw materials (probably in large quantities) wouldn't be cost effective, I'd have to store everything, and also worry about the shelf life of the end product.

    Why must we overcomplicate the simple life!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thanks again for all the feedback. What a great resource this forum is for all us "new eggs". [​IMG]
  8. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    I prefer to buy feed I can figure out by looking at it. At least for my horses. For the birds it's a bit harder, but for the birds, I try to find a local mill and stay away from the mass produced feeds. Local mills tend to actually list the ingredients. Nor just calling them "products"
  9. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    I use Countryside Naturals:

    Organic Field Peas, Organic Wheat, Organic Corn, Organic Oats, Calcium Carbonate, Hydrated Sodium Calcium Aluminosilicate, Organic Flaxseed, Organic Alfalfa Meal, Fish Meal, Dried Organic Kelp, Dicalcium Phosphate, Salt, Sodium Selenite, Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Choline, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex, d-Pantothenic Acid, Niacin, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Biotin, Folic Acid, Iron Polysaccharide Complex, Manganese Polysaccharide Complex, Zinc Polysaccharide Complex, Copper Polysaccharide Complex, Cobalt Polysaccharide Complex, Yeast Culture, , Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Bacillus Licheniformis, Bacillus Subtilis, Lactobacillus Lactis, Enterococcus Faecium, (Dried Aspergillis Oryzae Fermentation Extract)

    It's more expensive ($25 per 50 lb bag) and I also have to pay to have it shipped to me, but I have such a small flock of bantams that a 50 lb bag lasts me a couple of months anyway. I started my chicks off with a local soy based feed and noticed their droppings stank when I switched over to the soyfree feed. Now the only droppings that smell are the cecal poops.
  10. minichic

    minichic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 13, 2010
    Saratoga County, NY
    I ended up ordering from Countryside Naturals until I can find something locally (not having much luck). I like their ingredient list and I had my order in two days (Virginia to New York). Pretty good service. It's the shipping that kills ya...

    Anyone out there in the Capital District of NY been able to find a decent local chicken feed??????????????

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