Raising poultry at home: the benefits
The benefits of raising chickens, other forms of poultry, and game birds in your home can be summed up in two words.
“Cool as the moment the capsule exploded”
As a famous advertising slogan for freshly harvested peas said. Well, every day you will have the opportunity to pick up your own fresh poultry. Freshness is a vital characteristic when purchasing most food supplies.
The fresher we get from vegetables, short-lived dairy products and, of course, poultry, the better the end result of our finished meals will be. Raising poultry in your own home allows you to achieve this goal. Imagine the fresh egg for breakfast.
Traceability is another key factor. You will know the origin and breed of your day-old chicks, if you are not raising them yourself. You will know the foods, nutrients and medical treatments that your flock receives. You will be in charge of the living conditions of your birds to ensure that they have a healthy and safe life.
Can you make these comments about poultry products purchased from your butcher or grocery store?
To be sure, most first-class poultry suppliers go out of their way to make sure they buy as fresh as possible and, upon receipt, store them in the correct conditions. But unless they are producing the products themselves, which is unlikely, they depend on several steps before they receive delivery.
The bird and egg provider for one. When were the eggs laid? In most cases today, eggs or their packaging are batch coded or date stamped. However, this print can be from eggs laid several days before.
The supply of fresh meat, whether in the form of whole birds or portions, when was it slaughtered? On open meat counters there is usually no indication of the age of the meat. With some packaged fresh produce, an expiration date may be indicated. This date will not be relevant to the date the bird was shipped.
After leaving the farm gates, your poultry are now in the hands of the carrier, possibly an auction, probably a wholesaler before they reach the point of sale. Throughout all these stages there are standards established by the governing bodies regarding the temperature and conditions that must be met. But do they meet all the time?
With your own supplies practically on your doorstep, and waiting to be used in the kitchen, you can be in complete control of all those variables.
Raise a wide variety of poultry at home
The choice is great, and it doesn’t have to be limited to just chicken. On a scale to suit your needs, try raising turkey, duck, goose, or some of the game birds like quail, pheasant, grouse, and of course the occasional pigeon. For the avid chef it will be like discovering an oasis in dessert. A rich abundance of fresh food on your doorstep.
Raising poultry at home will give you a new hobby
Taking the stress out of everyday life when watching poultry grow and develop is exciting in its own right. Taking a little time to understand the process, starting from creating your own parlor and chicken coop, to possibly raising specimens to wear to shows and exhibitions, will enrich your life. Of course, after the initial setup costs, you will also be saving money.
Deciding to raise your own poultry is a step worth taking. There are many people and sources of information from which to get advice. Starting with manuals on DIY poultry houses, to detailed instructions on keeping birds. It is not difficult and can provide a lot of fun for you, your family and friends, as well as fresh food on your doorstep.