How healthy is your chicken?

How healthy is your chicken?

Knowing the food you’re consuming has become more important than ever for your family’s health.

istock farm chicken riversmead
iStock / WDnet /

The prevalence of allergies and food-related illnesses is forcing people to take note of what their food contains before consuming it or feeding it to their families. We also have to be careful of chemicals masquerading as colourants, flavourants, and preservatives.

A food staple in South African households is chicken. But how do you know the chicken you’re eating is safe and healthy? Here are a few things to consider when buying chicken for your next family meal.

Can they roam?

Are the chickens given chance to move around? This means they’re not caged and packed together tightly in a confined space. They have access to roam outside of their shelter and are able to walk freely. Healthy chickens should have access to clean, fresh air and enough room to walk around.

Riversmead Farm maintains a per square metre stocking density lower than the industry average. This means their chickens have group warmth and company when they want it, but are also able to move around and away from the rest of the chickens when they want to be alone. This makes for a healthier, happier, and less fatty chicken because of allowed movement.

Avoid forced sunlight

It sounds crazy, but some chicken producers use artificial lighting to keep chickens awake. This means the chickens eat more and get bigger faster than usual. Some producers use this method to ensure a quicker lifecycle. Chickens should follow the correct daytime cycle to be healthy.

Riversmead Farm allows their chickens to grow and develop naturally, with enough daylight and sleep.

What are they eating?

Are animal byproducts added to their chicken feed? This is something that should be checked out. While it’s healthy for chickens to eat insects and worms while they’re roaming outside, animal byproducts should not be added to their feed that is provided. You should also be aware of hormones added to chicken feed. These hormones are sometimes used to speed up chicken growth, meaning a faster turnaround time in the lifecycle.

Riversmead Farm ensures that no animal byproducts and hormones are added to their chicken feed. They mill their own feed, so their chickens’ diet is controlled and healthy.

You know that when you buy a Riversmead Farm chicken, you’re assured of a healthy chicken for you and your family. Find out more about Riversmead Farm chicken at

Also read: Winner winner Father's Day chicken dinner

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