Updated: May 8, 2019
Do you ever wonder why milk and eggs are cheapest in the grocery store? Big stores like to order in large quantities to be able to offer lower prices to their customers. Though it's cheaper for you, it puts a heavy strain on farmers. Farmers would prefer to offer the best quality products available, but cannot afford to buy quality feed or extras for their animals as prices drop and budgets tighten. Animal's immunities drop due to a lack of proper nutrition, and become medicated to be sure the animals stay alive to continue producing. Cheaper for you seems appealing, but you really aren't getting the quality you assume you're getting.
Not all products are created equally; for example, store bought milk is ultra pasteurized: destroying probiotics, enzymes and nutrients alike, making it far from nutritional. Pasteurization also allows farms with large cow quantities to practice less-safe handling procedures since the pasteurizing destroys almost everything; gross. Imagine all the things you DON'T want in your milk!
Eggs are no different when it comes to cutting costs. In the dairy and chicken industry, quantity is more important than quality. (NOT ON OUR FARM THOUGH!) Nowadays, chickens are kept 3-4 to a cage, stacked upon other cages under non-natural lighting. The cage floor is tilted so that any eggs laid will roll down onto a conveyor that collects them. When the chickens stop producing, they are sent to slaughter to be used for all sorts of processing, including human and pet quality foods and byproducts.
The major "organic" and "free range/cage free" commercial companies are NOT the good and glory that they seem to imply. Commercial "cage free" chickens are gathered by the thousands in large buildings with no amenities like perches where they can get off and away from the poop on the floor; forcing them to cluster together and sleep and coexist in feces. These birds typically don't have access to the outdoors. "Free Range" chickens have access to the outdoors, but also live in the same conditions as the "cage free" chickens. The outdoor areas are typically chain link, manicured grass areas. I don't know about you, but bugs don't bother me in the middle of my grassy lawn, but the moment I step into the forest, it's every woman for herself! Bugs don't like places they can't hide, lack of shade, or areas with an excessive amount of predators. So though those birdies are allowed to walk around in a grass area, is that really a dramatically better lifestyle worth paying $6.99-$7.99 a dozen for? Not in my book pal!
Commercial farms can't afford to let thousands of birds run freely for many reasons. They would NOT have a profitable egg business because hens like to lay eggs in weird places so that you and other's can't find them. Can you imagine a real egg hunt with thousands of hens? That's not efficient at all for a business on a grand scale! Another reason they can't afford real "free range" is because the predator attacks would decimate their profits. It takes a fair amount of time to raise a chick to a laying hen; around 6 months! Have you ever looked at one of these specialty egg farms' websites? They put the pictures of the birds right in the open for you to see; missing feathers, blunted beaks...yes they cut their beaks. When you have so many birds in one area, they fight! Chicken beaks are pointy, and they do NOT like crowded spaces, so to reduce risk to damaging the other inventory, they clip their beaks.
We do NOT cut beaks.
We do NOT keep our birds in cages or locked up for quality control.
We do NOT feed medicated food to our birds.
We DO have enough space for our flock to happily coexist.
We DO have multiple perches and nest boxes of different sizes and heights for the varied sized birds we have in our coop.
We DO let our birds free range wherever they want to go in our 24 acres consisting of grass land, hardwood and conifer forest, and wetland area.
We DO provide all the things birds need, including medical care when necessary.
We DO have a coop to protect the birds from predators and inclement weather, when they need it.
Our eggs are nutrient dense, brightly colored, and healthy for you! Can you say that about what you buy from the grocery store? Don't be disconnected from the food you eat, learn more.