woman raking leaves next to chicken coop

How to Store Chicken Feed

You can save money and stop food spoilage in its tracks just by using a proper feed storage system. Like any other feed, chicken feed is susceptible to mold, rancidity and vermin if stored incorrectly. So what’s the best way to store chicken feed? We have a few tips.

Can Chicken Feed Go Bad?

The short answer is yes. Chicken feed is very susceptible to the elements and needs to be protected in a cool, dry space far away from any scavengers. It is especially vulnerable to:

  • Mold: Feed stored in a damp place or outdoors near the chicken coop will quickly begin growing mold. When looking through your feed bag, you may find small clumps of mold that can easily be removed and discarded. If the whole bag has become clumped with mold, it’s unsuitable for consumption.
  • Rancidity: Food turns rancid when the fats in its contents start to oxidize, producing a foul odor that will turn your birds away from the feed tray. Feeding rancid food to chickens can cause them to lose weight and may even stunt their growth.
  • Vermin and insects: Chickens aren’t the only ones who love fortified, nutritious feed. If you store your feed in an open container or one that’s easily penetrable, vermin may eat through the bag. Germs from the vermin and insects can make your chickens sick, and the open bag will lead to mold and rancidity.

How Long Can Chicken Feed Last?

Most people buy chicken feed in 50-pound bags, but some last types of feed longer than others. Mash chicken feed is especially prone to becoming moldy. Its fine structure turns it into soupy cereal when it mixes with water. While this oatmeal-like consistency may be an enjoyable treat for your flock, the food’s integrity can be ruined if it’s wet for more than a day.

Out of all the types of feed, pellet chicken feed lasts the longest with proper storage. Pellet chicken feed is run through a machine that presses it into its signature cylinder shape using heat and force. This process sanitizes the feed and makes it last longer. Well-stored pellet feed can last up to six months.

The Best Way to Store Chicken Feed

Chicken feed should always be stored indoors and away from the elements. The ideal place to store feed is a cold shed away from dampness. Because certain flooring types like concrete can lead to moisture, you’ll want to keep your feed on a pallet or similar device that allows air between the feed and the floor. You should store bulk chicken feed in an airtight container that keeps out all moisture and vermin.

Many chicken farmers opt to place their feed in metal containers with food-safe paint or a ceramic barrier on the inside to keep the metal from interacting with the feed. Metal containers are the best way to store chicken feeds outside, as vermin will have an impossible time getting into them. Airtight plastic containers are another way to prevent your feed from going bad, but they may be more susceptible to pests.

Try Nature’s Best Organic Feeds Today

Whether you’re raising a small flock or are an experienced farmer looking to switch over to an organic feed, Nature’s Best Organic Feeds has a large selection of chicken feeds for flocks of any size or age. Try our bag and bulk chicken feeds today.