Sometimes the best remedies are found in nature. A chicken farm in Fredericksburg, Pennsylvania is utilizing oregano to feed chickens.
The company, Bell & Evans is home to loose oregano lying around in trays and barrels of oregano oil. For approximately three years, the chickens have been fed a diet laced with oregano oil along with a little bit of cinnamon.
Bell & Evans opt for the herbal remedy to fight off bacterial diseases without using antibiotics, as they are said to be harmful to humans who consume the meat. The owner of the company, Scott Sechler pledges to avoid antibiotics.
He speaks of the oregano approach, stating “I have worried a bit about how I’m going to sound talking about this. But I really do think we’re on to something here.”
Quality farming is not one-dimensional
Sechler acknowledges there’s more to his success than just the substitution of oregano oil for antibiotics. He also emphasizes the importance of solid nutritional standards for the animals, as well as a clean housing operation with plenty of ventilation and light. “You can’t just replace antibiotics with oregano oil and expect it to work,” Sechler said. At Bell & Evans, after chickens are harvested and sent to slaughter, workers hose down the barn, clean out the water lines, disinfect everything and then keep the space empty for two to three weeks to allow harmful bacteria and micro-organisms to die off, while also ridding the premises of any disease-transmitting rodents.
As word spreads of Sechler’s success, other farms are beginning to follow the Bell & Evans example. Bob Ruth, president of Pennsylvania-based Country View Family Farms, began testing a By-O-Reg laced feed on 5,000 of his own pigs for the last six months or so. Preliminary results so far, he said, are encouraging. (1)