Now, more than ever, people want answers — where does your food come from? And what kind of care is put into your food before it lands on the shelf?
At Farmer Focus, they believe that customers should have these answers at their fingertips. That is why they provide free range and organic chicken that is 100% traceable to the farm where it was raised. With the use of their 4-letter Farm I.D. and the help of third-party auditors who verify their certifications like Organic and Certified Humane, they’re able to carry out their commitment to full transparency.
For Farmer Focus, transparency, means that customers know exactly how their chicken is raised. Unfortunately, it’s hard to squeeze all the information about their standards and certifications on the packaging (it would be impossible to read if they did!). That’s why they’ve unpacked the label and are here to explain how the standards they’ve set as a company have led them to earn the following claims:
Organic, Humane, Traceable
1. What does it mean to be certified organic?
Farmer Focus: Like we mentioned, Farmer Focus works alongside third-party auditors that each verify different certifications. These third-party auditors frequently visit the farms we partner with to help all operations stay up to date. One of those certifications is organic.
Organic - A Combo of Diet and Environment
Simply put, the term “organic” refers to the standards for a bird’s diet and environment. These standards must be put into practice starting no later than the second day of a bird’s life.
Our chicken is fed an all-vegetarian, certified organic diet of corn and soybean meal. This blend of high-nutrient ingredients is never grown using pesticides or chemical fertilizers, is non-GMO (not genetically modified), and doesn't include animal by-products. Aside from the birds’ feed, an organic diet also means that the birds are never given drugs, antibiotics, hormones, or steroids (The FDA has prohibited the use of added hormones and steroids in poultry since the 1950s, so that is a given).
According to the USDA, organically raised birds must be given access to the outdoors, weather permitting. Unfortunately, this standard is vague and has created inconsistency in the poultry world. Outdoor access for some companies may only mean that chickens get open windows to peer through, while for others, outdoor access means that chickens are given space outside with vegetation and shade structures.
Because this definition of outdoor access is not specific enough, Farmer Focus works with the Certified Humane Program to better specify how our partnering farmers implement outdoor access, or “free range” systems.
2. What is Certified Humane and how does it define free range?
Farmer Focus: Created by the Humane Farm Animal Care Standards, the Certified Humane Program sets strict standards for humane animal treatment. These standards are set with the assistance of scientific research, veterinary advice, and farmers’ experience. The Certified Humane Program is especially unique because it offers strict objectives for the claim “free range,” which is not yet federally defined — and, as mentioned above, is a more concrete way to define this term for our partnering farms
To be considered free range by the Certified Humane Program, by 4 weeks of age, each chicken must be given a minimum of 2 square feet of outdoor space with living vegetation and shade structures. Access should last 8 hours per day, as long as there’s enough daylight and the weather permits.
It’s important to note that the Certified Humane Program doesn’t require farms to be free range. The Humane Farm Animal Care Standards decided to offer the standards for free range as an optional add on to the claim, and Farmer Focus chose to take advantage of the opportunity.
Aside from the standards for free range, the Certified Humane Program also outlines specific guidelines for humane animal treatment that guarantee a clean, stimulating environment with free access to food and water.
3. How do customers find out where their Farmer Focus chicken comes from?
Farmer Focus: Farmer Focus chicken is always traceable to the farm where it was raised. When customers buy our chicken, they will find a unique 4-letter Farm I.D. on the package that is enterable under the “Enter Farm I.D.” tab on our website. This interactive feature leads customers to a profile of the farm where the chicken was raised. There, customers can find the farm and farmer’s name, a brief story, and a gallery of pictures that catch a glimpse of the farmer’s life. Try it out! Enter Farm I.D. “PHIL” on our website and find out how, after moving away for years to work in construction, farmer Phillip Coblentz couldn’t help but return to farm life.
4. What do these certifications mean for customers?
Farmer Focus: Two words. Healthier chicken.
The way chicken is raised directly affects its nutritional value. By eating Farmer Focus- Organic & Free Range Chicken, you eliminate potential exposure to pesticides and other toxic chemicals. What you will get, though, is chicken packed with vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants. Studies have shown that organically grown food contains 69% higher levels of antioxidants. Additionally, the Organic Trade Association has found that organic farms emit 30% less greenhouse gasses than conventional farms. This means that with every purchase of Farmer Focus Chicken, you not only eat cleaner — you support efforts to keep the air you breathe clean.
We hope this rundown of our label makes you feel like a confident and informed chicken-buying-expert. If you have any questions or want to learn more about us, feel free to visit our website or find us on Facebook or Instagram.