I’ve been wanting to take a moment and write this post up for a while now…
About a year or so ago, somewhere on the web (probably while blog surfing) I found out about City Chickens. I was immediately interested, but continued to think about them, and not do much about it. I called my local city hall and asked about the law regarding having chickens in the city. Ofcourse the person I talked to said they weren’t legal, so I asked for a copy of the city ordinance that said they were illegal. In the end, what I read was that “farm animals, with the exception of household pets” are illegal within city limits. I’m not a judge or a lawyer, but in my opinion, Chickens, when only keeping three or four, and when housed in something like a chicken tractor, are a lot like rabbits. And when you’re keeping them in your YARD, they are more like pets than not. They all have their own personalities, and will come to you for food… and if you stick with it, will let you pet them, and come running when you call for them.
So as you probably figured out, I got some. I had good neighbors who didn’t mind pets, and if I had been contacted by anyone in the city about my keeping chickens, I would have stated that they were pets, the same as rabbits.
And so I started.
I started out to grow hens to get eggs from.
Then we moved to the country, and because we can have more than three chickens, I’d like to start growing my flock so that I always have young hens laying, and also for butcher. So I’m starting to add this year.
Even if you can’t grow your own eggs and meat, there are a lot of reasons you might think about WHERE your chicken (and other food) comes from.
I’ve learned so much in the last year about this, and I’d like to share…
First, I learned that TRULY Free Range eggs have:
than battery eggs. I also learned that you really need to Know What Egg Labeling REALLY Means.
I learned that the conditions that Battery Hens (the chickens that lay the eggs you buy in the store) live in are beyond indecent. Especially if you compare their lives to the lives of farm hens.
I learned that The Way Broiler (meat) chickens are Raised commercially isn’t much better.
I have learned that chickens have a language. They bond. They recognize people and things. They are smart, protective, habitual.
They deserve MORE than what industrial food industry give to them in exchange for the nourishment they provide.
Then I watched FOOD INC.
And learned even MORE about how the food we eat today is NOTHING like the food our grandparents ate. Fast Food, Technology, and Business are taking over our food, and in the interest of money and production, our nutrition been compromised. It’s not only hurting it’s PRODUCT, it’s hurting farmers, workers… and US. HERE is more about what Food INC is all about. If you can’t get it on DVD or watch in on NetFlix, you can watch it on TV April the 21st.
So what started out as three hens for eggs has changed for me… to include raising chickens for eating as well as for eggs. Because knowing your food means you appreciate it more.
I can’t even begin to share all the things I’ve learned in this post… I hope you take a moment and check out these links. I’m not asking you to stop eating eggs or meat. I’m not asking you to start growing your own eggs and chicken.
I’m asking you to KNOW.
Know your farmer.
Know your food.
Know the terminology that tries to fool.
I’m asking you to LOOK.
Look for locally grown food.
Look at your labels.
I’m asking you to VOTE.
Vote with your purchases.
Vote with the things you DON’T purchase.
As stated in Food Inc.
Every item that is scanned at the grocery store is a vote. It’s a vote for what you are willing to accept in your food. In your family’s food.
It’s why I choose chickens. Because I’m casting my vote.
I vote HUMANE.
I vote FREEDOM.
I vote LOVED.
I vote CARE.
I vote PERSONAL.
I vote to KNOW.