Our goal is to raise happy, delicious chickens that lead chickeny lives. We purchase Freedom Ranger chicks (formerly called Colored Range Chickens) from J.M. Hatchery in Pennsylvania, and raise them on pasture in chicken tractors that provide access to fresh grass, bugs, and soil, while protecting the chickens from predators and weather. We feed certified organic grains from In Season Farm in BC. The pasture has not been treated in any way.
We prefer Freedom Ranger chickens over the more common Cornish Cross chicken for a few reasons. Cornish Crosses have been bred as very fast growers, often ready for slaughter at 6-7 weeks. This fast growth has the unpleasant side effect of greater incidental mortality. Additionally, these birds spend all their time eating and growing, and even on pasture do not forage, play, or run and flap their wings. Cornish Crosses are not chickens we want to spend time with. You can read more about the issues with Cornish Cross chickens here.
Our Freedom Ranger chickens, on the other hand, act like chickens. They eat bugs and grass, and interact with each other and with the world. They are ready for slaughter at 9-11 weeks. This means they require more feed over their lifetimes and therefore cost more to raise and more to the consumer. This is a trade-off we are happy to make: despite higher cost, we can contribute to animal welfare and treatment overall, and deliver customers a better-quality product at the same time.
Here are the details of the ordering process:
- Orders will be allocated first-come, first-served. We will take reservations for fewer chickens than we have in each batch, in case of flock loss. This means we will also have a waiting list!
- We require a deposit of $5 per bird, refundable in the case of flock loss, and which will be deducted from your final total. The total cost will be $5 per pound. The deposit is required for your reservation to be considered complete.
- The chickens will be raised on untreated pasture primarily at Day Road/Suyematsu/Bentryn Farm (home of Laughing Crow Farm, Bainbridge Island Winery, Bainbridge Island Farm, Butler Greens Farm, and more) on Bainbridge Island, and fed only Certified Organic feed.
- In the unfortunate, and (we hope) unlikely case of significant flock loss, the last to sign up will be the first to have their deposits refunded and their orders canceled, and our sincere apologies.
- In keeping with state regulations, we will process on farm (on Day Road, Bainbridge Island), and the packaged chickens must be picked up on farm also. The birds will NOT be frozen, so bring your coolers, and prepare room in your freezers.
- Plan to wait about 24 hours before eating or freezing your birds.
- If you are interested in helping on slaughter day(s), let us know! We would love to have your help and can find a job for all interests and comfort levels.
- Specific bird selection is also first-come first-served — although the birds should average between 4.5 and 5.2 pounds, we cannot guarantee the size of the birds, so if you want a specific size, come early.
Turkey details are yet to be determined, but should be similar for the most part.
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Please contact us at email@example.com or 206-855-5493 with any questions or concerns.