Monday, March 5, 2012

Vegetarian or Omnivore?

I've been seeing advertisements on the TV for "Eggs that come from chickens fed with all vegetarian feed..."

The first thing that comes to mind is, why?
Chickens aren't vegetarians.
I have photographic proof.

"Whatcha doing down there all by yourself, June?"

"It's not a snake is it?"

"Ah, you've found a lizard."

"Oh, a snack, huh?" "I'll be quiet. I won't tell the other girls."

"That's it, shake it. Maybe that leg will come off."

The area of food labeling has become grayer and grayer.
What does it mean when something is Organic?
How about "Pastured" or "All Natural"?
"Free Range" or "Certified Humane"?

Those labels sound good, don't they?
In the case of eggs, you'd assume those hens are living the high life.
They might as well be eggs that come from a backyard farmer, only you know some officially titled person has looked over the eggs before they show up in your grocery store.

Those labels can add one, two or three dollars to the price of a dozen eggs in the grocery store. If they happen to be brown eggs, you can bump that price even more.

By the way, brown eggs are NO different than white eggs.
Shell color has to do with the breed of chicken that laid the egg.

If you buy those fancy eggs at the grocery store because you feel like they are more humane for the hens that lay the eggs, unfortunately, it's all just marketing.

If you want eggs from hens that have lived a barn-yard sort of life, try your local farmers market. The egg will taste amazing, be very fresh, and you'll know where it came from.


  1. Very well said! My girls love the occasional bug, snake, worm, yummm


  2. I used to really dislike eggs (bad experience as a kid) and then discovered farmer's market eggs. Totally different. TOTALLY. Since I've moved I'm having trouble finding good eggs (I don't know many people around here yet), but I'm fixin' to get my own chickens! Cross your fingers.

    PS - You may want to turn on comment moderation for posts older than, say, 30 days. It looks like some spammers have been targeting your older posts!

  3. Linda, this particular hen never makes a fuss about finding a snack (and then losing it). She's very sneaky.

    Katie, If you get chickens, get "Storey's Guide to Raising Chickens" before you do. It's the bible of chicken raising. You'll have such great fun if you get some, not to mention home grown eggs!
    Also, thanks for the heads up on the comment moderation note. The WV thing was making folks crazy so I turned it off. Your idea makes more sense.

  4. It is sort of disillusioning isn't it? Grow a garden, that's what I say!

  5. I always thought that when chickens scratched the ground they were looking for bugs, etc to eat. They are no more vegetarian than we are. I laugh when I see the ads saying they are feed a vegetarian diet. Yes, I don't want my chicken to eat parts from dead chickens. But bugs, etc are natural for them to eat

  6. We're thankful for the duck girls and their eggs here. What an amazing difference!

    It was very nice of you to keep the lizard on the down low for June. :)

  7. Haha. Vegetarian chickens. The worms, snails and lizards would vote for that. Shop local. Support your neighbors. Labels are just words.