Jul 27, 2012

Preparing for Chicken Feed Recalls- Safety First

  Most of us bring home bags of feed, empty them out into storage containers and throw away the ingredient tag, but that is a mistake. The feed bag tag contains valuable information about the production date, facility and batch. When opening a new bag of chicken feed, save the tag that is sewn into the seam and toss it on top of the feed bin.
The July 27, 2012 voluntary recall of certain lots of Purina brand chicken feeds is an important reminder that we need to know precisely what feed we are giving our chickens at all times. The recall was due the omission of Vitamin D in certain lots of Purina poultry feed.
  Most of us bring home bags of feed, empty them out into storage containers and throw away the ingredient tag, but that is a mistake. The feed bag tag contains valuable information about the production date, facility and batch. When opening a new bag of chicken feed, save the tag that is sewn into the seam and toss it on top of the feed bin.
Who was affected by the July 2012 recall?
Probably not you if your chickens see the light of day. Vitamin D is required for the absorption of calcium. Chickens naturally synthesize Vitamin D when exposed to sunlight and thirty minutes per day is adequate to satisfy their nutritional needs. Most backyard chickens are kept in the yard or run and have plenty of opportunity to soak in the sun each day, therefore the absence of Vitamin D in the feed is of no concern. However, chickens not exposed to sunlight regularly must receive supplemental Vitamin D, which makes this omission of concern for their health.  A lack of Vitamin D over a period of weeks can cause soft beaks, claws, weak eggshells, leg problems, impaired hatchability of fertile eggs and slow growth in younger chickens. If chicks are being brooded in the basement or room without access to sunlight, this recall CAN affect their health. No need to throw away the feed, however, simply put them outside for a half an hour of daily playtime in the sun.
  Most of us bring home bags of feed, empty them out into storage containers and throw away the ingredient tag, but that is a mistake. The feed bag tag contains valuable information about the production date, facility and batch. When opening a new bag of chicken feed, save the tag that is sewn into the seam and toss it on top of the feed bin.
  Most of us bring home bags of feed, empty them out into storage containers and throw away the ingredient tag, but that is a mistake. The feed bag tag contains valuable information about the production date, facility and batch. When opening a new bag of chicken feed, save the tag that is sewn into the seam and toss it on top of the feed bin.
This lump of feed was found inside my feed bag recently. Since I had the bag tag in the 
feed bin, contacting the company to apprise them of this quality control problem will
allow them to follow up on it. I did not use the remaining feed in case it was moldy and the company sent me a coupon for a replacement bag.

PREPARE FOR CHICKEN FEED RECALLS
 Most of us bring home bags of feed, empty them out into storage containers and throw away the ingredient tag, but that is a mistake. The feed bag tag contains valuable information about the production date, facility and batch. When opening a new bag of chicken feed, save the tag that is sewn into the seam and toss it on top of the feed bin.  While the July 2012 recall did not affect most backyard chickens, at some point a more serious recall might and being able to determine whether the feed in our pets' dishes is safe to eat could be critical.(As a side note, feedbags have many terrific uses, don't toss them out, repurpose them!)
  Most of us bring home bags of feed, empty them out into storage containers and throw away the ingredient tag, but that is a mistake. The feed bag tag contains valuable information about the production date, facility and batch. When opening a new bag of chicken feed, save the tag that is sewn into the seam and toss it on top of the feed bin.
Each bag of chicken feed has a tag sewn to it that lists the type of feed, nutrition information and the lot code for that particular feed. The lot code allows the feed to be tracked back to the manufacturer when problems arise. If your feed bag also has a date code stamped on the bottom of the sewn edge of the bag, save that too.
 Each bag of chicken feed has a tag sewn to it that lists the type of feed, nutrition information and the lot code for that particular feed. The lot code allows the feed to be tracked back to the manufacturer when problems arise. If your feed bag also has a date code stamped on the bottom of the sewn edge of the bag, save that too.
When I started hatching chicks, I got in the habit of tossing the tag on the top of the feed in its storage bin so I could distinguish medicated chick starter from starter/grower crumbles, which looked identical to me. When I got wind of the first chicken feed recall, I realized that keeping the lot tags with the feed was an important safety measure I hadn't even considered and have done it with all feed, grain, scratch, sunflower seeds, etc. ever since.
Each bag of chicken feed has a tag sewn to it that lists the type of feed, nutrition information and the lot code for that particular feed. The lot code allows the feed to be tracked back to the manufacturer when problems arise. If your feed bag also has a date code stamped on the bottom of the sewn edge of the bag, save that too.
I recommend cutting the tags off and tossing them on the top of the feed in its storage bin. When the bin is empty remove the old feed bag tags, refill the bin and toss in the new tags. This simple step ensures that we always know precisely what we are feeding our chickens and can help us safeguard them in the event of a critical recall.
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29 comments :

  1. Very informative! My chickens def get 30 mins or more sunlight each day. Your posts are always so helpful. Thanks for being you :)

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    1. Aw. Thanks so much for saying that, Alex.

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  2. Thank you for an informative approach to the recall. To me , the recall says that the company (Purina) is doing the right thing. I hesitate the further condemnation of a reputable business due to an error and a resulting recall. Purina Mills is a responsible company that does its research. I feed it to all my animals and I care very much about their health .

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    1. My pleasure, Janet. Thank you for your comment.

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    2. I agree- Purina, and other companies who issue voluntary recalls are doing the right thing for consumers. I also commend you Kathy for your thoughtful and informative postings. I had not seen your blog and page prior to this- but love it and plan to visit often!

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  3. Thank you for such a logical 'save the tag' suggestion. Love your blog!

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    1. Thank you, Maryann! It's nice to have you following along with me!

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  4. Thanks! I never thought to save the tags before! (I do re-purpose the bags though!)

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  5. Thanks! This is what I have, but my chickens free range from sun up to sun down. I have a steel drum with a lid and just set the open bags down inside with the lable attatched. Great post: )

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  6. I repurpose every bag we get. They are great for so many uses. We don't have to worry to much with our "babies" getting enough Vitamin D because they have good chances to have sun! :-) I commend Purina for taking the step up and letting others know and recalling the feed once they realized what had happened. To me this shows that they were double checking their work and found a problem...which means great gains for those of us who feed their brand of feed.

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  7. I want my girls to have fresh water....I'm entering to hopefully win the nipple water feeder!
    Love all that you do for us chicken lovers!

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  8. Great tip! I'm going to start doing this with the dog food too! I hadn't even thought about it!

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  9. Summer Lindsey8/9/13, 4:34 AM

    A few days ago, I bought a 50 lb bag of starter/grower instead of my usual 10 lb bags of starter. I have had a chicken revolt. It is being scratched out & the chickens act as if starving whenever I refill their dishes. Any ideas? I didn't change brands. I have 3 separate age groups & same behavior from each pen.

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  10. TheChickenChick8/9/13, 9:38 PM

    Chickens dislike change. Don't worry, they'll get over it. They're not going to starve (as evidenced by the fact that you have to refill their dishes).

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  11. Dorrie Taylor11/30/13, 11:26 AM

    Great Info ,,Thank you

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  12. I buy blue seal feed and one batch was loaded with bugs and if I hadn't kept the tag I would have never gotten credit back for it. Im sure the bugs wouldnt not hurt the chickens but I didn't buy bugs I bought chicken feed.

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  13. Deborah Tabor11/30/13, 11:37 AM

    Very, very good tip! You're absolutely right in tossing the bags as we do that. My husband is a prepper so probably has at least 9 bags of chicken feed, goat feed, ferret, dog & cat food (not to mention canned cat food in the 30's-40's). He believes in never running out. :)

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  14. Margaret Marshall11/30/13, 11:51 AM

    I saw this just after we got our girls and have been doing it since! I love the bags and try to save them for potato growing the next year. Thank you Kathy for all you do!!

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  15. Deborah Paterson11/30/13, 12:26 PM

    great tip thanks :)

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  16. Barbara Metzger11/30/13, 12:27 PM

    awesome tip, I also reuse the feed bags as trash bag they are great for yard stuff

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  17. Sunny Van Horn Ploch11/30/13, 12:34 PM

    Excellent word of wisdom - I do save the bags to repurpose I will begin by placing bag on top of feed in the storage bin and remove when refilling. Thanks my friend

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  18. TheChickenChick11/30/13, 2:22 PM

    Thanks Dorrie.

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  19. I don't buy commercial feed, but this is good to know, anyway.

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  20. Valerie Nelson12/1/13, 1:04 AM

    Thanks for this very important information :)

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  21. Lynn Karg Richards12/1/13, 1:08 PM

    Great advice!

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  22. Wendy Lynne1/4/14, 9:07 AM

    I'm wondering if my Chickens Diet is affecting their laying.. they have just about stopped laying totally.. at first I thought it was because of the shorter days, but still with 15 hens I'm not even getting one egg a day?....

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  23. TheChickenChick1/5/14, 12:57 AM

    This should help you figure out what's going on, Wendy. It could be a combination of things. http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/12/decrease-in-egg-production-causes.html

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