Why only 16% available for layers?

Kiki

⚡The Keeks⚡
Project Manager
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Jul 31, 2015
111,266
655,039
2,102
Houston, TX
My Coop
My Coop
I plan on updating the sheet soon.
It's been a while and I do believe one or two of these feed companies have closed and I'm sure I might be able to find a few more new ones.
 

Kris5902

Crossing the Road
Oct 12, 2018
4,812
32,484
942
British Columbia, Canada
I’m in Canada, and have different Feed options available to me... if you check to see if they have a layer/breeder feed it is usually 18%. When I was buying from a co-op that only carried 16% I had to “special order” in my meat bird 19% Broiler feed, I would mix the two and offer oyster shell on the side. The issue with that was a much higher fat% in the Broiler feed. I have since found a better local supplier, and another feed store that carries an 18% of the same brand as I was buying from the first place. Shop around and ask a lot of questions, it took me almost a year to find my current supplier, they are a little out of our way, but I’m much happier with them. They let me buy a pallet at a time at a discount and draw from it as I need it, and the feed is much less dusty. I highly recommend Red Barn and Top Shelf Feeds for anyone on or shopping on Vancouver Island BC, Canada.
 

SwampFlock

Songster
Nov 28, 2020
63
179
106
So I experimented with FF, with their initial response, I was encouraged to set up an assembly line of 4 large jars of FF. But now after 2 weeks that my assembly line was going well, they seemed to have lost interests. I switched to morning FF feed which allow them all day to finish before they get their late afternoon with wet mash mixed with treats. Still experimenting! I also just purchased a 5lb flock raiser crumbles (learned my lesson, try first before committing to large bags) - have to figure out how/when to give them the new feed.
Mine don't like any more than a 3 day ferment. If it smells like stale beer instead of weak cider I know it's gonna be a tough sell. And good plan with mixing it up. Fermented might be a lot to handle if they eat it nonstop; I'm just lucky anything I give mine is balanced with what they get on the land.
 

linguini

Chirping
Jan 8, 2021
105
160
98
Bridgewater NJ (Central NJ)
Mine don't like any more than a 3 day ferment. If it smells like stale beer instead of weak cider I know it's gonna be a tough sell. And good plan with mixing it up. Fermented might be a lot to handle if they eat it nonstop; I'm just lucky anything I give mine is balanced with what they get on the land.
That's good to hear - I was about to give up FF. I'll try that. It's not a lot of work to FF -- since it's only added water and time.
 

GC-Raptor

Free Ranging
Jul 26, 2016
4,777
8,125
561
Connecticut, USA
Does anyone know where to find layer feed with > 16% protein?
The feeds below are 21% Protein and available at independently owned feed and garden stores like Agway and others.
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20190725_070153_resized.jpg

The feeds below are 18% Protein and available at TSC. Hearty Hen is soy free. Feather Fixer bag says can also be fed year round and contains slightly less calcium 3.5% than most Layers feed.
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You could also buy a 16% layers feed crumbles or pellets and a 20% All-Flock feed and mix 50/50 and offer Oyster Shells separately.

Myself I prefer to feed a Non-Medicated Starter-Grower 18% Protein and offer Oyster Shells separately.
20201126_051320_resized_1-2.jpg

I'll also buy a All-Flock crumble 20% for a dollar more if my preferred feed isn't available. GC
 

linguini

Chirping
Jan 8, 2021
105
160
98
Bridgewater NJ (Central NJ)
The feeds below are 21% Protein and available at independently owned feed and garden stores like Agway and others.
View attachment 2504637 View attachment 2504638
The feeds below are 18% Protein and available at TSC. Hearty Hen is soy free. Feather Fixer bag says can also be fed year round and contains slightly less calcium 3.5% than most Layers feed. View attachment 2504643 View attachment 2504644 View attachment 2504654
You could also buy a 16% layers feed crumbles or pellets and a 20% All-Flock feed and mix 50/50 and offer Oyster Shells separately.

Myself I prefer to feed a Non-Medicated Starter-Grower 18% Protein and offer Oyster Shells separately. View attachment 2504647
I'll also buy a All-Flock crumble 20% for a dollar more if my preferred feed isn't available. GC
Thank you so much - this is very helpful!
 

VGKCHICKS

Hatching
Aug 27, 2020
2
1
7
Reading this forum has become my daily obsession, there is so much information from all the postings! As an accidental chooks mom (or grandma since I inherited our spice girls from my daughter who left home for graduate school) I am hopelessly obsessed with our lovely chooks and I also have so much to learn.
All our chickens are girls, named after spices. We have 8 hens, they are all almost 7 months old. 6 of them started laying last month.

Perhaps I am thinking too much, but I am quite confused by the conflict between what the consensus from this forum shows with what is offered in the market place for layer feeds.

From what I learned from the forum, most people prefer flock raiser with 20% protein with oyster shell and grit on the side for their flock.
My main questions are:

If higher protein is important, why are all the layer feed that we can buy from big box stores only provide 16% of protein?
Are some important nutrients in these 16% layer feed not included in the 20% flock raiser? Moreover,
feeds with lower % of protein don't seem to be as tasty to chickens!

If chickens' preference is an indication, it also point to higher % of protein to be more desirable. Why do the feed producers think that 16% is sufficient for layers? Is costs the only driver to 16%?

Does anyone know where to find layer feed with > 16% protein?

All input welcome! Thanks in advance.
https://ifacountrystores.com/
IFA stores have up to 20% protein they own their own bead mill in all their chicken feed has full photic 's prebiotics and omega's in it 50 pound bag of 20% layered pellets around 16.99. My hens love it.
 

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