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Chicken FAQs

What does the chicken look like when I come pick it up? Do I have to take the feathers off?

Your chicken is completely processed when you come to pick it up. It will look very much like a store-bought chicken, no head, feathers, or feet, insides clean, ready to freeze or cook.

Can I get chicken anytime I want?

Pastured poultry is a seasonal business, taking advantage of the green grass and warm weather to grow healthy animals. As such, we only produce our chicken between March and September, so stock up for the winter months. In addition, we raise and process the chickens in batches to better manage our costs, so the season is divided up into processing days, when your chicken is available to be picked up, fresh and chilled.

Why do you charge so much more than it costs at the grocery store?

Industrial chicken farms make up their margin largely by reduction of labor. The hours of labor per bird produced, combined with economies of scale in feed and processing, enable them to charge a small percentage of our cost. However, these same factors directly affect the quality of the meat, resulting in thousands of chickens housed together in unsanitary conditions, eating low-grade feed, and surviving through sheer grit and antibiotics. Mass mechanical processing alone decreases the value of the meat through ruptured organs and multiple chlorine baths. When compared to a pastured poultry operation, with higher labor and feed costs, it is a significant improvement to have open air shelters, no antibiotics, and daily pen moves for sanitation and fresh forage. Meat quality and flavor is dramatically different and small batch, hand processing insures consistent quality.

Is this legal?

Yes, processing chickens on farm is legal through both federal and state law due to the high costs associated with small batch processing.

Is your chicken organic? What about non-GMO?

The word “organic” has become surrounded by a tangle of certifications and legalese that have obscured the real intentions of the movement. Our chicken does not pretend to meet the standards of the certifying organizations, but we do consider our chicken to go beyond the standards in both quality and environment. We do not use antibiotics on the chicken or pesticides on the pasture. Our feed is fresh from Big Spring Mill, one of the last surviving feed mills in Southwest Virginia (www.bsmill.com). It is unmedicated and natural. We pick up our feed frequently to make sure it is fresh and has the highest nutrition possible. We have grave concerns about the use of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) and support efforts to reduce or remove these from our farms and tables. However, our primary goal is to assist our patrons in taking a major step forward in the quality of their meat. Feeding organic, non-GMO feed would quadruple the cost and make high quality meat more inaccessible to the general populace. If a segment of our patrons have the interest, we would be delighted to raise some specific batches with all organic, non-GMO feed and supply them accordingly. In the end, the best protection from unhealthy food is to know your farmer. We invite all our patrons to come by for a tour at any time to insure your chicken is the best that can be produced.

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