What The Labels Mean
Which One is Right For Your Birds
There are many brands to choose from, these randomly picked brands will give you an idea of what each feed type is for. I have fed all these brands and have been happy with them.
Starter / Grower Feed
Specifically formulated for baby chicks.
You will feed this all the way until the first egg.
Layer Pellets (I feed my hens this brand)
Layer Feed: This feed is for adult laying hens that are producing eggs. It usually contains higher levels of calcium and other nutrients to support egg production and shell formation. Also available in crumbles, either is suitable for your birds.
Broiler/ Meat Bird
This feed is formulated specifically for meat chickens, also known as broilers. It has higher levels of protein and energy to promote rapid weight gain and muscle development.
I mix this higher protein feed in my Silkies’ feed as they tend to need a bit more protein than other breeds.
Scratch grains are a mixture of grains such as corn, wheat, and barley, and are typically fed as a treat or supplement rather than as a complete feed. Scratch should not be the sole source of nutrition.
Organic Feed (Expensive)
Organic chicken feed is made from ingredients that are grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, antibiotics, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Medicated Chick Starter
Medicated chicken feed that contains added antibiotics.
I use medicated feed for mail-order chicks for the first week after they arrive.