|We ordered 25 birds, and one came free, so we started with 26. We lost two as chicks, and had to cull three more at the six-week mark due to leg injuries, so 21 birds made it to the butcher date at eight weeks. That's a mortality rate of 19%, or 8% if we don't include the six-week culls, although 26 birds is a pretty small sample size. The butchering price increased from $3/bird to $4/bird for us this year. The dressed-to-live weight yield is 72%, and the feed conversion ratio is ~2.5:1. For comparison, the industry figures are 4-5% mortality rate, 71-74% dressed-to-live weight yield, and just under 2:1 feed conversion ratio.|
|To compare with other organic whole chicken prices, we're right in the range of what's available online (sources here and here), and a little above what's available in our local Sprouts grocery store. Of course, if we got it from them, we wouldn't get any fertilizer for the garden! We're also $0.54/lb less than our batch last year, even with the increased processing price, so we're definitely moving in the right direction.|
|Now that's a happy freezer!|
Next steps for us? Start growing our own feed and get better set up to do our own butchering!
How do your home-grown chicken prices fall out?