Farm and ranch retailer Tractor Supply Company is kicking off “Chick Days” nationwide this week with a focus on powering backyard farmers and the fast-growing self-reliance movement.
Chick Days, a springtime event featuring live baby chicks and ducklings at most Tractor Supply Company stores, runs through April.
The event has traditionally attracted farm families and hobby farmers looking to replenish their flocks, according to Marc Johnson, divisional vice president of merchandising at Tractor Supply.
With demand for backyard chickens spreading, a new breed of chicken owner is joining farmers and ranchers in raising poultry.
“As everyday Americans from rural towns, suburbs and city neighborhoods look for ways to eat healthier, great-tasting food and live a more self-reliant lifestyle, they’ve turned to raising backyard chickens,” Johnson said. “Chickens play an important role in sustainable living and provide families a safe, reliable source of delicious food.”
Living and eating on your own terms is a key benefit, says Robyn Kevlin, of Nashville, Tenn., who started raising six hens in her backyard in 2012.
“Backyard hens are a way to control what goes into your food, literally,” Kevlin said. “Part of raising chickens is knowing where your food came from and knowing the animals were treated fairly, and some of it is the fact that it is such good food.”
Fresh eggs and free-range poultry is not the only benefit, says Shannon Campbell of Ashland City, Tenn. Campbell says her flock plays an important role in her family’s daily life, from teaching values and work ethic to her five children to providing incredible compost for the garden.
“One of the best things about the kids being around our chickens is they get to enjoy the fruits of their labor almost instantly; they come out here, they bring eggs in the house and we almost immediately crack them and eat them,” Campbell said. “All of our food waste that the kids don’t eat we give that to the chickens and then anything else goes into the compost so they get to see that whole cycle and actually be a part of it.
“And it’s something that we’re all doing together,” Campbell said.
Johnson says Tractor Supply stores stock all the items backyard chicken farmers need, including starter kits, feeders, bedding, heat bulbs, coops and more.
“The Tractor Supply team understands and shares our customer’s passion when it comes to raising animals,” Johnson said. “Whether you’re an experienced farmer or starting your first ever backyard brood of chickens, Tractor Supply has the tools you need to raise happy and healthy chicks.”
Find a nearby Chick Days event.
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