Chicken Farm Videos
In this 360 tour and other videos, you’ll tour a working Ontario chicken farm and meet the farm family. They’ll explain how they raise and care for their birds.
FarmFood360° Virtual Reality Chicken Farm Tour
In this 360° video tour, you’ll get to see inside a working Ontario broiler chicken farm. These are chickens that are raised for meat. You’ll learn how chickens are cared for from the time they arrive as newly hatched chicks until they are ready for market. You’ll also learn what they eat, where they live, and how chicken farmers care for them.
Caring for Chickens
Newly hatched chicks arrive on this farm when they’re hours old and leave when they’re market ready at about five weeks of age. They are raised for meat (called broiler chickens) and will go to grocery stores or restaurants. Farmers Donna and Barry discuss the responsibilities of caring for these birds as they grow including biosecurity, feed, water, lighting, ventilation and temperature systems.
Farmers give back
Ontario broiler chicken (meat chicken) farmers Barry and Donna are involved in the CFO Cares Program, run by Chicken Farmers of Ontario. Annually, that Farmers to Food Banks program donates over one million fresh chicken meals to community food banks across the province. The chicken donated by this farm family goes to food banks in their community. Donna also talks about conversations she has with consumers in her local grocery store!
What chickens eat
In this video you’ll meet farmers Barry and Donna as well as Larry, a Canadian poultry specialist. His career is focused on making sure that chickens, like these ones, are receiving the proper nutrition and diet at each age of their growth (called rations). Birds on this farm are raised under a special program called “Raised without Antibiotics”. Larry also explains that no Canadian chickens, ever, are given added hormones. That’s been illegal for more than 50 years.
Story of Canadian Chicken Farm Family
Meet the husband and wife team of Barry and Donna who raise meat chickens (called broiler chickens) on their farm in Ontario. They’ll talk about how they became chicken farmers and what they love about the work they do: “providing good, safe food for Canadians”. Donna also talks about the industry’s Women in Leadership program which encourages female farmers to become more active in their industry and community.
- There are over 2, 800 chicken farmers across Canada. Farms can be bigger or smaller but the average farm in Canada has about 36,000 birds. The farm you are touring here is in Ontario.
- Chickens raised for meat are called “broiler” chickens or “roasters” when grown to a larger size.
- They always roam freely within the barn. Most are housed in modern barns where temperature, humidity, light and ventilation are carefully monitored to ensure that the birds stay healthy. This also protects the birds from predators like foxes, weasels and skunks and also reduces the chances of the birds being exposed to disease. The barn floor is covered with a soft bedding material of straw or wood shavings.
- While they can roam through a barn as they please, most chickens like to stay near each other. That’s where the saying “Birds of a feather flock together” comes from.
- Chicks are delivered to the farms from hatcheries when they are one day old, and the birds have unlimited access to a healthy feed mix consisting of corn and soybeans and clean water throughout their five to eight week growing cycle. This feeding system is called “free choice”.
- Most poultry farmers put all their new birds into the barn at the same time and then ship the entire flock to market on one day. The barns are then cleaned out and all the bedding and manure are removed to get ready for the next flock, helping to keep the birds healthy.
- Chicken farms are operated under a risk management system called supply management. This system allows farmers across the country to match their production to Canadian demand. After determining how much chicken Canada needs, farmers are able to produce that amount.
- No chickens, turkeys or egg laying hens in Canada are ever fed hormones. They’ve actually been banned here for over 50 years.
- In Canada, there are mandatory Animal Care and Food Safety Programs that ensure all chicken raised by chicken farmers receive the best care and are produced to the highest food safety standards.
- On most farms, “broiler” chickens are ready to be marketed at about 35 to 36 days or age, when they weigh about two kilograms. These will be available in supermarkets or used for food service in restaurants. While on other farms, larger “roasters” are ready to market between 45 and 55 days and will weigh between three to five kilograms.