Organic vs. Non Organic Feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by MsLisaG, Mar 21, 2012.

  1. MsLisaG

    MsLisaG Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi all - We are going to be picking up our girls soon, and I was wondering what thoughts are on organic feed? I've read a bit but all info I can find seems to be coming from the producers of organic feed. I was just wondering if anyone had some real world thoughts on the advantages of feeding organic? My local feed store doesn't carry it in store, but they can special order it for me. Wondering if it's worth it to go through the trouble.
     
  2. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote: There are no real proven advantages nutritionally, and it's far more expensive
     
  3. MsLisaG

    MsLisaG Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the input. That's what I was thinking, but figured I'd ask. I would love more opinions! :)

    Lisa
     
  4. Erica

    Erica Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think organic feeds are about minimising pesticide use, and maximising sustainability. Looked at that way, it boils down to your personal philosophy.

    I don't mind spending more if somewhere, somehow, someone isn't using dangerous pesticides to grow a crop. That's one tiny patch of soil that isn't heavily contaminated. But I don't always buy organic as mostly I mix my own feed, and often I simply can't buy organic alfalfa or organic wheat.

    For me GMOs are worse than general pesticides (for reasons I won't go into as they'll take all day; people can do their own searches on 'GMO health effects') so I choose to buy non-GM but also non-organic grains and legumes, and do my own mixing (with animal protein too).

    It all boils down to what you are raising your own birds for, and what your worldview is.

    Best wishes however you do it,
    Erica
     
  5. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My mom was an environmentalist and I've seen first hand the damage done by lawn or crop based fertilizers and other contaminants. One instance, a developer was going to fill in a pond to build a subdivision. We were tasked with catching as much wildlife as we could to save them from the bulldozers.

    Out of that pond came 92 painted turtles. They were ALL disfigured with growths and mutations. Water testing showed high amounts of pesticides. Turtles had to be tested for re-release, to be sure we weren't introducing contaminated turtles to other habitats. Everything on them was benign, so we released them. But all those extra toes, bumps and lumps... some ugly turtles.

    GMO... in the lab I think is worse than a simple cross pollination that happens all the time. It's when they get in there and restructure the DNA artificially using non-plant things that irks me.

    We recently switched to non-GMO feed. Too soon to see how the birds are with it, but they do LOVE it. They run to the food bowl when I add more now, instead of the usual "Oh, yay, more crumbles" with a look that says I should have brought something else.
     
  6. MsLisaG

    MsLisaG Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the responses. I have read a bit about GMO, and I'm certain that I don't like it. I think I will be buying non-GMO feed, but maybe not necessarily organic. I buy organic anything when I can but I think weighing my options with what kind of feed is available to me, organic will be a hassle as I will have to special order it every time.
     
  7. CMolberg

    CMolberg New Egg

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    Conventional feed contains GMOs, and feed that makes the claim that it's gmo-free is not backed up by verifiable procedures to protect it against contamination. Certified organic feed is produced in a way that prevent contamination from GMOs. The organic certification is built around protecting the grain from GMOs, herbicides, pesticides, and many other areas of concern.

    Whatsonmyfood.org is a website that published recent USDA data regarding toxins found on conventional fruits and vegetables, in addition to feed grains. Check for yourselves as to some of the differences. Several of those residues are chelators. They do not breakdown in the soil, and they also bind the nutrients, which makes the plants require more fertilizer from year to year. So much of the nutrition is derived from synthetic, petroleum-based fertilizers rather than healthy, living soil.

    These residues and GMOs do not get destroyed in digestions, but rather, build up in our systems causing indigestion, ulcers, and several other digestive problems. There is verifiable and conclusive evidence that even conventional chicken eggs have these residues and genes in them.

    So basically, it's hard to compare organic to conventional when they are so fundamentally different. With organic, you avoid pesticides, herbicides, animal by-products, waste products, GMOs, and fillers. This isn't a pitch for organic, but rather a little information to make the best decision for you and your family.

    Thanks :)
     
  8. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote: Care to post some links to that evidence?
     
  9. CMolberg

    CMolberg New Egg

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    Google is a good place to start; there are several medical journals throughout the world that have well documented research regarding the pesticide residue in eggs and meat. If you have access to a college library, there are more available. Any college with a food technology department should have be able to provide you with some research.

    As for the genes, Jeffrey Smith, Harold Vlieger, and Arpad Pusztai, are some of the most notable researchers in that field. The gene presence is a result of horizontal gene transfer, by which the transgenic genes are passed from plant, to animal, to human.
     
  10. GardenState38

    GardenState38 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Even though you may want to feed organic (as I did/do), the feed ultimately needs to provide a fully balanced diet for your flock.
    My experience with one organic feed turned out to be somewhat negative, in that respect. The feed I tried was not available in a crumble (the form my girls prefer), but only mash or pellet. I opted for mash because my girls don't seem to like pellets.
    Turned out that they would pick out the bits they preferred from this soy-free formula, leaving behind much of the field peas that were the main protein source. Soon after the first bag was finished, I had feather picking, which I attributed to a lack of protein.
    Once back on the regular commercial crumble, which seemed more palatable to them, things seemed to calm down.
    I may try another brand of organic--probably in pellet form to ensure more complete nutrition, but I really wish an organic crumble were available!
     

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