Chickens for Rent!

chickens pair
Share this!

Rent The ChickenFor city folk increasingly obsessed with foods that are locally sourced, organic, seasonal, farm-to-table and sustainable (think Portlandia’s on-point “Farm” episode), the idea of raising chickens in their backyard is just what the organic farmer ordered.

So when I came across a Toronto Life article announcing Rent The Chicken services were coming to the Toronto area, I just had to learn more.  The service is offered by The Stoddart Family Farm, based in Little Britain, about 90 minutes North East of Toronto. For $375+taxes, you get two egg-laying hens from June to October. The package includes a delivery and setup, a chicken coupe, feeding bowls, chicken feed, a how-to-raise chickens guide, and a copy of “Fresh Eggs Daily” by Lisa Steele.

I typically buy a dozen local, organic eggs per week at $6.50 a pop. Over the course of four months, I spend $117 on eggs (wow!).  Two backyard chickens will yield 8-14 eggs per week, so an average of a dozen eggs per week. The rented chickens will cost $375, compared to $117 on my grocery store eggs for the same period.

There is even a “Hatch the Chicken” package which comes with fertilized eggs, incubator and brooder box. Now that sounds pretty cool! I can imagine the kids would love that.  🙂

And just in case you’re interested, it’s not currently legal to raise chickens in Toronto. The city can fine backyard farmers $240 for a bylaw infraction. However, according to this recent Toronto Sun article, enforcement is complaint-based, and they received 97 complaints in 2014. Toronto City Council even debated the matter in 2012 but indefitely deferred the motion to overturn the regulation.

The Verdict

Renting a chicken is not cheaper than buying eggs; however, it does provide city-dwellers the unique experience of house husbandry in their own backyard. Plus, it’s priceless knowing exactly where your food comes from, and knowing that you actually helped create it.


Follow me! FacebooktwitterpinterestrssFacebooktwitterpinterestrss
Share this!

I'm a Canadian mother of two with a passion for food and cooking. I'm increasingly discovering that delicious food can also be healthy! So, I am sharing my favourite recipes with like-minded home cooks. Along the way, I'll also be writing about food-related topics such as gadgets, books and television. Let the culinary adventures begin!

Be first to comment