Perhaps you’ve heard someone cleverly say, “Eat organic food. Or as your grandparents called it, ‘food’.” We love that tongue-in-cheek way of saying that organic farming and food production used to simply be the way food was produced—without chemicals and excessive processing. It’s a simplicity that we are striving to bring back to the animal feed industry.
Prior to the 1950s–before glyphosate and other pesticides were sprayed on crops, preservatives were used to extend the shelf life of feeds, and antibiotics were incorporated into animal feeds–farmers used natural methods to keep their harvests healthy and fed their livestock clean feed made of whole grains. Scientists eventually discovered that chemicals would keep pests at bay both in the field and in storage and that adding antibiotics to feed would contribute to an increase in size and production in animals. The case was made that these new methods would also save time and money, and so began the major shift in how feed is grown and stored. Whole grains began being treated in the field, in transit, in storage, and throughout processing facilities. Natural protective coatings around the grains were broken down during these processes until the integrity and nutritional value of the grain was virtually destroyed.
The repercussions of industrialized farming are now being seen; health implications from pesticide-laden, genetically engineered, and high processed foods are now coming to light. A return to clean, organic foods for us and our animals is what more people are craving. We want food to be wholesome again, and for much of our food that means starting with what we feed our animals.
Scratch and Peck Feeds can be trusted to never be over processed, pelletized, nor include medications. Pelleted feeds have become the norm in the animal feed industry, primarily because they have been marketed as convenient and the way to eliminate waste of fine particles. However, the process of making pelleted feeds requires the use of high pressure, moisture, and heat to bind ingredients that have already been highly processed into meals and sprayed with more chemicals to keep pests away while in storage—conditions that often destroy the natural nutritional aspects of the ingredients. Many low-quality pellet feeds also include less expensive filler ingredients that are highly processed and less than nutritious and, in some cases, may contain toxic residues. With Scratch and Peck Feeds, grains are organically grown and left whole. Our grains are coming from the region meaning they are harvested, transported to our mill and go back out the door to our customers. A truly field to feed product. The fines and fats can be seen in each handful. The differences are visible! Unlike pelleted feeds, our feeds can be fermented to ensure choosy animals do not leave behind these essential, raw nutrients.
We are proud to be part of this resurgence in organic, non-GMO foods and clean feed for animals. Our raw, soy-free feeds are never medicated and do not contain preservatives. Animals can be raised on feeds, supplements, and treats that contain naturally nutritious ingredients like sustainably raised Black Soldier Fly larvae and Certified Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified corn and herbs, so that healthy animals are free from regularly administered antibiotics and pesticides. The benefits of a wholesome diet can be seen in every egg with a vibrant orange yolk or rich, creamy goat milk from animals fed an organic diet. In a time when it feels like things are moving forward fast, it feels good to get back to the simple lessons in life.