How are chickens made

The farm chicken

One might assume that a domestic chicken can automatically be counted as a farm chicken. This is not the case, however, because there are certainly breeds of chickens which, because of their beauty, are kept exclusively for show purposes. Their "benefit" for the chicken farmer in terms of egg and meat production is often of a purely incidental nature. In agriculture and with most hobby chicken keepers, the chickens that are kept in stables, cages and enclosures can certainly be counted as farm chickens.

A chicken with a lot of use

As the name suggests, the farm chickens are chickens that are useful for their owners. In order to avoid pennies, the purely “optical” benefit should be left aside and limited to the actual, “tasty” benefit. The farm chicken brings both meat and eggs to the plate. But not every breed of chicken is just as suitable for one as the other. Although more than 180 breeds and color varieties are known in the European pedigree poultry standard, not even counting the numerous unclassified chicken breeds, breeding of breeds hardly plays a role in the agricultural industry. Here one has switched to breeding so-called hybrid races, which have been genetically optimized for either rapid growth or high laying performance according to their usefulness. A procedure that, if you take a look at the numbers, is quite understandable.

Chicken consumption in numbers

In the past fifty years the global hunger for chicken has more than quadrupled. Every year around 11 kilograms of chicken meat are consumed per capita, which requires 45 billion chickens. To reach the slaughter weight of 1.5 kilograms, a chicken today needs around a month and around 1.6 kilograms of feed per kilogram of meat. Fifty years ago, this required 5 kilograms of feed and twice the time to reach the slaughter weight. Even the immense need for eggs would hardly be able to be met without hybrid breeds optimized for high laying performance.

Worldwide around 145 hen eggs are consumed per capita, so a total of 1,000 billion eggs have to be "produced" every year. With chicken breeds that do not like laying, this is an almost impossible undertaking. While the agricultural industry is concentrating on its "special breeds" in order to satisfy world hunger, hobby chicken keepers can devote themselves fully to the pleasures of the eyes and the palate and also have the choice between the different laying, meat and cattle breeds.