When I first started shopping for chicken feed, I was clueless as to what organic and non-genetically modified organisms (GMO) meant.
I remember purchasing a popular feed with attractive packaging—my chickens loved it, but over time their feathers lost their shine and egg production was poor.
Unfortunately, many types of animal feed are filled with additives, hormones, and sugars with little nutritional value.
Today, we’re going to help you choose the best organic chicken feed by taking a look at what organic feed is, the top 2021 organic chicken feed brands, and what you should feed chickens for the healthiest results.
Best Chicken Feeds of 2021
Let’s explore the most popular non GMO chicken feed from value and affordability to our top pick!
Let us compare the top picks in the following categories:
Organically Certified and Non-GMO feed that provides the right balance of calcium and protein.
If you are looking for a good quality feed that is also affordable, then Coyote Creek delivers the best value.
This organic chicken feed is affordably priced and packed with nutritious grains.
The best chicken feed should be balanced, cost-effective, and provide birds the protein and calcium needed for their growth stage.
Coyote Creek is one of these feeds and every chicken will love to eat the variety of seeds and grains, selected for its vitamins and minerals.
It is a pullet developer range, and not suitable for layers.
Best Non-GMO Chicken Feed
Specially formulated for laying hens. It offers calcium for strong eggshells and proteins of 16% for muscle and feather formation.
Scratch and Peck Feeds Naturally Free is our featured non-GMO chicken feed. It provides a complete diet for laying chickens, it’s 100% organic.
The brand has certified its feed as completely natural and easy to give to poultry at any time of the day.
Not only is it good for chickens but they are sure to love the blend of fresh grains.
The seeds and grains are a great source of fiber and support digestion in chickens.
This food is verified as free from genetically modified organisms, so every chicken can benefit from naturally grown and produced feed.
This is a USDA certified organic feed made for hens in lay. The organic ingredients provide 16% protein, added calcium, and vitamins to support layers.
Of the feeds that I have reviewed, my pick is the Manna Layer feed.
I have always preferred pellet food for chickens because it reduces waste caused by powdered grains and mess in the coop!
This layer feed does contain some corn and offers the minimum protein and calcium that chickens need to lay hard eggshells.
Feeding chickens a nutritious meal is made easier with this range because it has no additives.
You can also get a variety of grains in a scratch feed to supplement the pellet formula.
Your chooks will love you for it!
Top Organic Scratch
Small Pet Select makes it onto our list for a top chicken scratch because it offers value and nutrition.
The scratch contains a mixture of grain and seed. It is an easy way to give chickens a healthy source of fiber.
Give chickens the Small Pet Select scratch a few times a week to prevent boredom and encourage foraging.
The Top 5 Organic Chicken Feed Products
Here are the full reviews of all products from the lineup…
Certified Organic and Non-GMO feed that provides the right balance of calcium and protein.
Coyote Creek is a pullet developer feed that is certified organic and non GMO.
It consists of crushed corn and grains that encourage free-range feeding.
Your chickens will simply love picking out their favorite grains.
What is great about this chicken feed is that it does not have to be supplemented and is a complete feed for pullets.
Simply add fresh water and know your pullets are receiving the nutrition they need.
When you use Coyote Creek Organic Feed, pullets will benefit from 17% protein which is the ideal ratio for young hens.
It supports feather formation, strong bones, and prepares egg-laying hens.
I like the variety of fresh seeds and grains that every chicken can forage through and thoroughly enjoy.
Each grain is carefully selected for its nutritive value so chickens receive the right balance of calcium and protein.
The available grains provide fiber for digestion and are the ideal size for pullets to eat.
- Non GMO: Yes
- Soy: No
- Feed type: corn and grain
- It is a certified organic feed
- It does not contain soya bean or GMO
- 17% protein for feather, muscle, and bone growth
- Complete chicken feed for healthy growing pullets
- It is not available in a layer feed
Specially formulated for laying hens. It offers calcium for strong egg shells and proteins of 16% for muscle and feather formation.
Scratch and Peck Feeds is considered among the best chicken feed because it is certified organic and non GMO.
It provides raw, wholegrain ingredients for laying hens.
The unpelleted grains consist of barley, flaxseed meal, sesame seeds, fish meal, and a vitamin premix.
The grains have been carefully selected to provide the right balance of nutrients for good egg production and health.
Scratch and Peck can be fed to chickens from 20 weeks of age.
This product is specially formulated for laying hens. It offers calcium for strong eggshells and proteins of 16% for muscle and feather formation.
I like that this layer feed contains no soya bean.
While it is a standard ingredient in many types of layer feed, it is not beneficial to chickens. Poultry cannot digest soya beans.
When food is packed with this ingredient, it may cause nutritional deficiencies.
When you visit the feed store, be sure to look for soy free chicken feed.
The grain-based diet for layers can be supplemented with oyster shells for egg development.
- Non GMO: Yes
- Soy: No
- Feed Type: Grains
- It is a natural feed for chickens
- Contains no modified ingredients
- Is a complete layer feed
- Has fermented sources for probiotics
- Fiber source supports digestion
- Pricier compared to similar chicken feed
- Be aware of excess powder from crushed seed and grain
Top Organic Scratch
If you are looking for an affordable scratch for chickens, the Small Pet Select Sustainable Chicken Scratch is a natural product for the foraging flock.
Available in a grain formulation, poultry can benefit from fresh ingredients that are fortified with vitamins and minerals.
A chicken scratch is not a complete feed but considered a treat or a supplement for backyard chickens.
It should only be fed to chicks older than 12 weeks of age to prevent crop and digestive problems.
You can give this scratch to your hens, roosters, and pullets.
Because it is not genetically modified, it is a good choice of product for naturally raised flocks.
Simply store this food using the resealable bag which keeps the ingredients fresh and crisp. You will only need to provide a sprinkle of scratch once a day to encourage natural foraging.
Remember, the scratch is not a balanced feed for chicks, pullets, or layers. It is a treat that every chicken will simply love to eat. Be sure to accompany scratch with fresh water throughout the day.
- Non GMO: Yes
- Soy: No
- Feed Type: Scratch
- It’s a free organic scratch
- Does not contain an abundance of corn
- Offers value for money
- Easy to store in a resealable bag
- Not a complete chicken feed
- It does not state organic
This is a USDA certified organic feed made for hens in lay. The ingredients provide 16% protein, added calcium, and vitamins to support layers.
This well-known poultry feed offers USDA certified organic pellets for hens in lay.
The ingredients provide 16% protein, added calcium, and vitamins to support layers. It should be given over the age of 16 weeks to ensure healthy digestion.
Smaller fowl may struggle to consume the pellets.
You can use Manna chicken feed with a natural scratch if you want your flock to receive some fresh grains in between the daily layer food.
As it is certified organic, you can feed this range to hens and know that you are getting natural eggs.
This non GMO chicken feed contains corn and soya bean.
While soy is not a favorable ingredient, Manna Pro does offer a feed that eliminates artificial ingredients and antibiotics.
I like that this chicken feed is in pellet form because it reduces waste.
A few grain-based feeds are filled with powder which adds to the weight of the bag.
Poultry cannot consume powder left behind by crushed corn and grain.
What is also interesting about the free organic feed is its natural protein source.
If you want an egg without pesticides and additives, then consider Manna’s organic and non GMO chicken feed. In addition, always make fresh water available with daily meals.
- Non GMO: Yes
- Soy: Yes
- Feed Type: Pellet
- The pellets reduce waste
- It is organic and free from additives or chemicals
- The calcium and protein sources are obtained from plants
- Variety of vitamins for chicken health
- It is not soy free
- Requires proper storage to prevent waste
Fortified with essential vitamins and provides a complete feed for layers.
Kalmbach Feeds describes its layer pellets as all-natural; however, it is not organic.
It is without antibiotics, contains natural flavor, and eliminates animal by-products and fats in the feed.
Although this feed does not fall into the category of non GMO chicken feed, I like that it offers a blend of nutrients such as oils for shiny feathers, and antioxidants to boost your birds’ immune systems.
Layer chickens can benefit from added calcium and a 17% protein ratio to develop the strongest eggshells and deep orange yolks.
Kalmbach has also formulated its feed to improve digestive health with its variety of probiotics, prebiotics, and enzymes.
Kalmbach provides poultry with soybean meal which is actually a suitable source of protein. Poultry can digest soybean meal.
It includes a fair amount of corn.
Corn is a simple grain that poultry can easily digest.
This brand is part of our list for the best chicken feed because it is fortified with essential vitamins and provides a complete feed for laying hens.
If you want to give your birds fresh grains, then you can add a good quality scratch as part of a feeding regime.
- Non GMO: No
- Soy: Contains soybean meal
- Feed Type: Layer pellet
- The pellet formula minimizes waste
- It is a complete layer feed
- Added vitamins, minerals, and enzymes
- It is labeled as all-natural but is not organic food
What is Organic Chicken Feed?
Feed that is organic does not contain additives and synthetic ingredients.
This includes hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides.
Any addition that is artificial or ‘unnatural’ is eliminated from organically produced animal feed.
This is the basis for an organically certified feed but the process goes much further than eliminating chemical additives.
How the Best Organic Chicken Feed is Produced
For a feed to be certified as organic it starts with the land or soil that seeds are grown in to produce the food.
The soil that corn, barley, or maize is grown in must not be treated with pesticides or chemical fertilizers.
Only organically certified farmers are authorized to produce and sell under the organic label.
The shipping and production process is just as complex!
The raw ingredients and feed cannot come into contact with human-grade or other food types because it is not treated with pesticides.
Is Non GMO Chicken Feed Organic?
Research concerning the long term effects of genetically modified organisms in animal meal have shown higher rates of antibiotic resistance, poor immunity, and interrupted growth.
Genetically modified ingredients are considered additives and foods containing GMOs are not considered organic.
To understand the benefits of organically sourced feeds, it is important to know how to meet the nutrition requirements of chickens.
What are the Nutritional Requirements in Feed for Chickens?
Chicken feed should include protein, calcium, vitamins, amino acids, and probiotics.
For chicks, a starter grower with protein helps form strong bones, muscles, and feathers.
For pullets (hens younger than 16 weeks) and older chickens, you can use supplementary grit to aid the digestion of food.
Chickens use grit to grind food in the crop.
Meeting these nutrition standards is essential to raise a flock; however, an organically produced feed can maximize nutrition and make for happy and healthy chickens.
This begs the question, why should chickens get natural foods without hormones and preservatives?
Why Chickens Should Eat Organic Food
The basic need of any animal is a nutritious and balanced diet.
When food is naturally produced, it is packed with healthy essential nutrients in support of the development of birds.
The Benefits of Organic Chicken Feed
To keep poultry in the best condition requires quality chicken feed.
Feed containing natural ingredients provides the nutrients that young and older chickens need for good health.
Giving laying hens non genetically modified ingredients will help with regular egg production and yolks that are full of flavor.
Finding GMO Feeds
When you buy conventional foods at the local feed store, it is important to read the information on the label. Not the kind of reading you’d normally want to do but it is still important.
It should have a list of non GMO, organically certified ingredients.
Natural feeds support the healthy growth of chickens of all ages.
It can strengthen their immune systems making them less susceptible to disease.
If you are rearing a natural laying flock, organically sourced feeds prevent eggs from containing antibiotics, hormones, and additives.
The Best Chicken Feed for Chicks
Hatchlings need a starter grower food for development while laying hens need a balance of protein and calcium for egg production.
Unfortunately, when feeds contain synthetic compounds and chemicals, it reduces the nutritious quality of the feed.
It also introduces birds to chemicals.
Antibiotics are known to compromise natural immunity in both chicks and older birds. Chemicals will also affect normal growth rates.
The Benefits of Natural Feed for Egg Production
If your flock eats chemically produced feed, each egg you consume will contain the same chemicals, antibiotics, and additives.
By introducing organically grown and sourced feed you know that egg production does not contain these chemicals and you are receiving natural, nutritious, and tasty eggs!
Here is a video about organic chicken feed…
You will notice an improvement in the condition of the shells and the overall health of your hens.
Organically grown and produced feed is not only good for chickens but for you too.
What Do Organic Chickens Eat?
The best chicken feed provides balanced nutrients, is cost-effective, and is available for every life stage from hatchling and pullet to hen.
You can get organic chickens fresh grains, pellet, and crumble formulas provided that it is certified as organically grown and produced.
Find soy free feeds that are easier for poultry to digest.
If you wish to raise organic flocks or eat natural eggs, then organically certified feeds and treats are important.
What to Feed Chickens for Organic Eggs?
The one thing you should get for natural egg production is an organic and complete feed for chickens.
The best chicken feed for layers does not contain additives, hormones, antibiotics, and preservatives.
Feed for egg laying must be a complete diet specifically for layers and contain 16% protein, added calcium, and essential vitamins and minerals.
Look out for fish meal which is an excellent protein source.
Grain, Pellets, or Crumble?
Grains and seeds are favorites because these are not chemically manufactured and homegrown.
Corn-based chicken feeds that do not have soya bean or modified ingredients make for valuable poultry diets.
Grain is wonderful for digestion because it provides natural fiber.
A natural pellet feed is best for larger fowl. I like that a pellet diet is one way to reduce the waste that you find with crumble or grain foods.
Crumbles are ideal for chicks and smaller chickens that cannot eat large pellet or grain type foods. It is also suitable for fussy chickens!
What are Organic Chicken Treats?
Chicken scratch is the best natural treat for poultry.
It consists of seeds and grains that make for healthy chickens while stimulating foraging behavior.
It is a great way to keep every chicken busy throughout the day!
When you get scratch for chickens, it is best to supplement with grit for digestion. Make sure you provide fresh water with every treat and meal.
Check the Product Label for Organic Feed
The packaging must state that it is organic.
This way you know that the feed does not include chemical additives.
How to Supplement Layer Feed?
For the healthiest egg production supplement the hen diet with oyster shell for chickens.
Oyster shells are a great source of calcium for strong egg shells and good health.
One should also include grit to help with digestion.
The decision to go organic depends on your preferences and the one chicken feed that you find works best for your flock.
An organically produced feed is suitable for healthy egg production in layers and supports the development of young chickens and pullets.
You need to know that the quality of feed will affect egg production.
Best Non-GMO Chicken Feed
I’ve included Scratch and Peck Naturally Free as the best chicken feed for layers because it has the right balance of nutrients to prevent soft eggshells and underdeveloped yolks.
While the cost of organically certified feed is generally higher than other ranges, it can provide quality nutrition, especially for egg layers.
If you want high fiber feed that is easy to digest, look for soy free brands such as Coyote Creek’s organically certified chicken feeds.
The information concerning soya bean shows that it is not recommended for poultry.
I like that naturally based feed is available in grains, pellet, and crumble consistencies so I can choose a feed that is cost-effective and that they will love to eat.
A great quality scratch is always a healthy treat.
Top Organic Scratch
You can add Small Pet Select Sustainable Scratch a few times a week and always in moderation.
The best chicken feed is nutritious and provides a complete diet.
Hopefully, with our list of the top natural feeds, you now feel you’re in a place to choose which one of our picks will deliver the right value, balance, and the healthiest of chickens.