Well, I’m going to diverge from my series on having an Eco-Friendly holiday for this post, because it’s something that’s been on my mind a lot lately. It’s probably only taking up so much real estate in my brain because the season of food is upon us, and that makes me think a lot about food security. In the wonder and magic of the holiday season, it’s important for us to keep in mind that “where” we get our food from is just as important (if not more important) than “what” we eat.
In this context, I’m talking about chickens. Specifically, my chickens. We live in an urban neighborhood with a small back lot, but thankfully in a city that loves chickens as much as I do. They provide us with entertainment, with food, and with a valuable source of nitrogen for the garden boxes. Aside from all of that, they provide something else: food security. With food prices spiking wildly throughout the year, and safety becoming a larger concern, it is pretty great knowing that you’re getting at least some of your food straight from your own home. Growing plants, chickens, or whatever else is a key component of being truly eco-friendly. The less you take out of the overall system, the better. The less we all take part in the industrial food system, the better. Plus, I have to say… there is something pretty awesome about going outside in the morning to grab a couple eggs for breakfast.
There are a lot of farm stores near just about any city that you can buy chicks from, but most people buy from online breeders. This is because they get a MUCH bigger selection in terms of what breed of chicken they get, and they get a pretty big discount too. People that do this generally get a bunch of their interested friends, neighbors, and family to pitch in since the minimum order from these places can be a little high. Since most cities won’t let more than 2 chickens on an urban lot, it’s important to have people waiting to help thin out the herd, so to speak. While it will be a little work to keep them fed and taken care of, my experience has shown me that it’s well worth the extra work.