(Yes, I know how to spell Chicken, but that is no fun.)
I am rethinking the value of my little flock. To replace the chicks I paid $3.65 each for last year will cost $4.99 each this year. Both prices are for 25+ chicks. That would be over $125 for 25 day old chicks that cost around $95 last year. That is a 25%+ increase. Can’t wait to see if the price of feed jumps.
There is probably an increase in demand and operating costs for a couple of reasons. Millions of laying hens were destroyed last year over the bird flu hysteria created by 35 reported cases. Your government is protecting you. There is also an increasing demand for local and backyard flocks for food independence and security. Some people are protecting themselves.
The over reaction to the minor threat of bird flu has also increased operational costs to hatcheries. Hatcheries have to be able to certify their flocks are bird flu free to maintain customer confidence in the product. Certifying that condition requires an extensive regime of inspections, precautionary treatments and operational restrictions in handling the birds.
The Bio-Security guidelines for keeping a flock bird-flu and disease free are ridiculously extreme. Essentially you have to treat your flock like a bubble-boy. That kinda throws the whole free range concept in the toilet.
Interesting is how all this works to the advantage of justifying centralized control of food sourcing and production. All this over 35 sick birds.
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