Community Chickens / Fermented Feed

Why and How to Ferment Your Chicken Feed

This past Saturday, I published a post summarizing the benefits of fermented feed and some basic directions on how to get started.  Take a look at “Why and How to Ferment Your Chicken Feed” over on Community Chickens!


Do you want to save money on your feed bill? Do you want better feed conversion, stronger shells, shinier feathers, and healthier birds?  If you are willing to do a little extra work, you can ferment your chicken feed and reap a bounty of rewards.

Continued on Community Chickens!
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12 thoughts on “Why and How to Ferment Your Chicken Feed

  1. I tried asking over on Community Chickens but I goofed it up. I am trying to be as “organic” as is reasonable in my back yard orchard and EM-1 keeps popping up in things I should use to promote a vital food web in my soil. During the course of trying to figure out what exactly EM-1 is my brain keeps getting tickled with the idea that it would make a good inoculant for fermented feed, but then my brain does a backflip and says what about using the hooch from the fermented feed in place of EM-1 in my “organic” pulsing sprays?

    • It’s a really good connection. “The major groups of microorganisms in EM•1® are lactic acid bacteria, yeast and phototrophic bacteria.” I think you could definitely use fermented feed as your inoculant and your inoculant to culture your fermented feed. You should also check out Korean Natural Farming because you could make your own inoculant. They have a rather complicated process whereby you collect and grow your own “indigenous microorganisms” or IMO. (Here’s a video on making it: I’ve started it a few times and gotten sidetracked, but I am determined to do it one day. I want to add IMO to my deep litter. Some of the other Korean Natural Farming preparations, like lactobacillus itself as a spray, are also really useful for chicken litter. There is even a Korean Natural Farming feed method. It involves fermenting feed and greens with a bit of chicken poop in specific proportions. Hmm, where did I put that…? Oh, here it is: You are such an innovator, Max! So creative. Thanks!

  2. Heather you can color me dumb but I have no clue what “apple cider vinegar with the “mother”” means. Are you referring to apple cider that has fermented to the stage of achohol?

    • Thank you for asking! Apparently, many people have this same question. “Apple cider vinegar with the ‘mother'” is raw or unpasteurized apple cider vinegar. [] Vinegar has gone past being alcohol and become acetic acid through the work of acetic acid bacteria (acetobacter). If the vinegar is pasteurized and processed, the living bacterial community that made the vinegar is destroyed, but it is that part which you are using to begin your fermentation process. The most commonly found brand of raw ACV is Braggs which you can find in the “natural” area of most large grocery stores or on Amazon. Many poultry keepers are already familiar with “ACV with the mother” because it makes a great supplement in chickens’ waterers as well which you can read about here.

  3. I thoroughly enjoyed your post on CC…am sharing it in a note on my facebook “blog page”, Caddo Critter Hobby Farm…with full credit to you of course and a link back to here. Hope that’s okay. 🙂

  4. Pingback: There is fungus among us | The Fruity Chicken

  5. Hi Heather, I was researching the internet on the topic of olive eggers and found your article on Community Chickens. We got a few new chicks back in May and some have started laying. Then in June, we let our hens go broody to see what would happen. Only 2 eggs hatched and only one chick survived. She’s now old enough to be laying. We’re not sure what breed she is since we have a variety of hens (she’s white). We have 2 roosters, a Cuckoo Maran and a Large white one that we think is a leghorn. Well we started getting olive eggs that we’ve never seen before and were wondering if it’s possible they are coming from the chick that survived. She is totally white with a pea comb. We have 2 Americaunas. So we’re wondering if the egg that hatched was the Cuckoo Maran rooster crossed with the Americauna. Would it be possible for that egg to hatch a white chicken??? And now she’s laying the olive eggs? The other newer hens that we have that might have started laying are Salmon Faverolles, Red Shouldered Yokohamas, Appenzeller Spitzhauben, and a Polish hen (who we know lays tiny white eggs). So the only other would be the white hen. But we’re pretty sure these are not the olive eggers based on what we’ve read. Any info would be so helpful.

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