What needs to be done to be able to call your eggs "Organic"?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by PineBurrowPeeps, May 18, 2008.

  1. Hi there Fellow Chicken Lovers,
    I have been reading for a few days now and poking around the board and finally decided to start posting.
    My name is Jenna and I have 14, 5 week old pullet chicks right now. I live in Rhode Island and my family and I just bought a small farm on 4 acres about 4 months ago. We lept right into being farmers and are loving it! [​IMG]
    Anyway, I was wondering what a chicken farmer has to do or feed their chickens in order to call the eggs they sell roadside "Organic"?
    Right now our girls are eating a regular store bought starter by Dumour with chick grit and some old fashioned oats mixed in.
    Just curious!
    Great to meet you all;)
  2. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    You have to meet the government requirements for organic and pay them a huge sum of money to use the word. You might want to say 'better than organic'.

    Organic means the chicks from day 2 have always had organic feeds, lived in a hen house without any type of treated wood, never ranged on a field treated with chemical fertilizers or insecticides - just a bunch of hoops to jump through and a big check to write.
  3. Gee whiz, what a lot of red tape, huh?
  4. jaku

    jaku Songster

    You could go with "natural," or "farm raised," which could mean anything, but to most people it has the same meaning as organic- just buzzwords, but ones you can use legally.
  5. mamarosa

    mamarosa In the Brooder

    Apr 30, 2008
    Thank you as a novice just waiting for my chicks to arrive
    I want my eggs to be as "organic" as possible.
    Any suggestions on feed.
    I am just trying to be a little more healthy than store bought eggs for myself, family and friends.
    So far, my area the chicks will be in has not had any pesticides, the coop has no treated wood.
    I am not going to be "crazy" but just more healthy
    thanks for any suggestions
  6. Eggseronious

    Eggseronious Songster

    Mar 6, 2008
    East Tennessee
    Organic is a bigger word than it looks. It takes 3 years to become that word "organic" not worth it in my opinion. I think the parent stock have to come from a certified flock also. Do a search with the USDA.
  7. Bodnsoul

    Bodnsoul Hatching

    Nov 22, 2007
    Organic has become a real buzword and it unfortunately isn't a real guarentee of quality. Just by feeding a good feed from a good feed mill that is non-medicated and giving your chickens access to pasture/grass/bugs and sunshine you will produce a better egg and meat bird then the grocery store eggs and chickens. If you want to have some fun, give better feed, then you can grow some feed for your birds. I have a small patch of alfalfa/clover to give them, scraps from the garden, mangels, huge heirloom carrots, the harvest from my section of garden planted to soil builder mix composed of winter peas, vetches, oats, bell beans. and I am thinking of a plot of miller and maybe sorghum. Next year I am tilling a large plot in the upper field to plant to s few heirloom corns, oats, wheat, rye, barley, winter peas, and am omega 3 forage mix that my organic farm supply sells designed as apoultry forage mix.

    In my garden I do use some chemical fertilizers, but I use them responsibly and not to the exclusion of feeding the soil with organic matter. Actually I use the chemicals to feed the cover crops I use to enhance organic matter in the soil. What I don't use is pesticides except for an occasional hit of rootenone or pyrythrum for stubborn problems. but even these I try to use as a last resort and normally I have to use nothing except neem/soap/oil.

    Interestingly the term free range used in marketing eggs and meat means almost nothing, The birds must be allowed outside an hour a day but not nesessarily on pasture, so while the birds may get a little sun and excersize, which is better than the life of most broilers or battery hens, it still isn't really doing any foraging or eating greens that would produce a healthier egg or carcass.
    Last edited: May 19, 2008

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