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REAL free-range chickens/eggs?

Is there a place in/around vancouver to buy REAL free-range chickens and/or eggs. I know that when it says "free range" on packages all that means is that chickens have "access to a pasture." Which in practice means that the chickens are farmed indoors in the dark as per conventional methods, but once during their lifetime the farmer opens a little doggie door for about five seconds therefore satisfying this very loose definition of, "access to pasture."

Is there a way to get real (not grossly genetically engineered, beak stuck in a feed tray 23 hours a day) chicken in/around vancouver? Eggs as well?

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  1. For chicken, look for the Polderside brand (Bosa, Famous Foods, Columbus Meat...etc). For eggs, check out the Vancouver Farmers Markets and also farm stands out in the Valley. You might want to check out a place like Famous Foods as well. A fair number of family-run places in Cowichan/Saanich and Salt Spring Island sell free range eggs...I don't know of a source for those here.

    (I usually buy the Maple Hill brand which I believe is free range in the way you describe).

    2 Replies
    1. re: fmed

      Polderside does not have free range, all their chcickens are inside which is quite clearly stated on their web site.

      1. re: Fryston

        I stand corrected. (I posted a more updated list of suppliers downthread http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6901... )

    2. Outside of farmer's markets, Rabbit River eggs are reasonably widely available (i've definitely seen them at Capers, Choices, Famous Foods). They are SPCA certified, which i think would fit your bill.

      4 Replies
      1. re: NoMoreSnuggles

        Yes! Exactly what I was looking for thanks!

        1. re: NoMoreSnuggles

          We buy Rabbit River eggs too. They're relatively expensive, but worth it IMO, and available at our local Save On.

          1. re: pear tart

            Bradner Farms eggs supplies Rabbit River and are usually less expensive. They're SPCA certified as well. They aren't "pasture raised", but it seems it's pretty tough to get everything - pastured, organic, and readily available in the city. :p I get mine from Choices for ~$5.60/doz (about a buck less than the Rabbit River eggs) Given the amount of eggs I consume, it's important to me that they're of exceptional quality.


            1. re: Khai

              the spca of bc has been working for several years to enhance the life and death of farm animals - ie what we put in our bodies

              they have a good website (link above in prev post)

              if you have not looked at the stories and the "retail locations" ... it makes interesting reading and future dinner party conversation, for sure. Nothing like being next-hand to what we eat.

        2. Try Cowichan Bay Farm http://www.cowichanbayfarm.com/Philos...
          The best chicken I've had on the Island...

          1. For eggs, one more place to check is Craigslist

            1. I don't know where you live, but I buy my eggs from a lady on Number Two Road in Richmond. I see the chickens wandering around her yard - that's free-range enough for me! I'd love to find farm-raised chicken - I used to get mine from Dee in Richmond, but they've moved and their chicken operation is no more.

              1. I buy my very well-bred and cared for chickens from Tannadice farms on Vancouver Island. If you're not willing to make the trip yourself, contact me if you like. Check out their website:
                happy hunting!!!

                2 Replies
                1. re: erinq

                  Interesting website. No where on the site about how to contact them. No address. No email. No phone #. No nothing. I guess one would have to look them up in the phone book. Not very smart marketing IMO.
                  Probably busy enough anyway right?

                2. I hope the formatting turns out OK:

                  Biota Farms Certified organic by Bio-dynamic 776 Townline Rd Abbotsford BC V2T 6C9 604-859-5959 karlhann@shaw.ca
                  Bradner Farms Free-range 28670 58th Avenue Abbotsford BC V4X 2E8 604-856-1227
                  Glen Valley Organic Farm Certified organic by BCARA Abbotsford BC 604-857-0017 glenvalleychris@gmail.com
                  Rockweld Farm Certified organic and SPCA certified 34205 Townshipline Rd Abbotsford BC 604-859-1199 rockweld@shaw.ca

                  Glorious Organics Co-op Certified by BCARA 1374 256 St Aldergrove BC V4W 2J4 604-857-1400 glorious@portal.ca

                  Forstbauer Farms Biodynamic and organic methods 49350 Prairie Central Rd Chilliwack BC V2P 6H3 604-794-3999 farm@forstbauer.com
                  HDB Farm Certified organic by FVOPA 42180 Sumas Rd Chilliwack BC V2R 4W3 604-832-6584 hdbuttar@shaw.ca
                  Rehoboth Farm Free-range and SPCA certified 41410 Yarrow Central Rd Chilliwack BC V2R 5G5 604-823-5434 j.anne@shaw.ca

                  Powell River
                  Hatch a Bird Certified organic 6603 Mcahon Ave Powell River BC V8A 4W2 604-483-9546 bird483@telus.net
                  Windfall Farm Certified organic by PACS 5750 taku St. Powell River BC V8A 4V9 604-483-3061 ldan2003@telus.net

                  Rabbit River Farms Free run/ range, certified organic and SPCA certified 18360 River Road Richmond BC V6V 1M1 778-668-8848 rabbitriver@shaw.ca or steve@rabbitriverfarms.com

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: fmed

                    Rabbit River Farms on sale this week at Save-on-Foods for 4.99 a dozen

                    1. re: islandgirl

                      got RRF for $3.99 at a grocery store in Richmond

                      1. re: betterthanbourdain

                        Wow! Which store? And what's their regular (non-sale) price?

                        1. re: Khai

                          Urban Fare has a coupon in their flyer: if you spend over $30 you can purchase a dozen RRF for $2.99. If you go, call before to make sure they have some in stock as they sell RRF eggs (when on sale) quite quickly....

                    2. On #6 rd in Richmond there is a family that sells free range organic eggs from their house. They also sell the birds. You can see them running around. Excellent local producers that have been around for a long time.
                      Take Knight st bridge to West Minster Hwy turn left then a quick right at #6 rd about 1/2 km on your right hand side you will see a white sign with red letters.
                      Fresh Eggs free range, organic.
                      About $5 a doz for large although there is s,m,l,exl and double yolkers at times. The birds are excellent as well. If you have saved egg cartons bring them with you as all are recycled.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: cucinelle

                        cucinelle, can you provide an address, phone number or a google maps location, pls? I was not able to find the location you're mentioning.

                        I've tried somewhere close to this location http://maps.google.com/maps?q=8683+10...

                        1. re: traiann

                          6651 no 6 rd :) i was just there!

                          1. re: xzenaidax

                            Thanks! Anyone know what hours they are open/there?

                            1. re: xzenaidax

                              i think i've been there. they do sell eggs but not the birds... hmmm

                        2. I get free range organic eggs delivered to a depot near my house through NOWBC (www.nowbc.ca) They are from Reid farms in Chiliwack.

                          1. im looking for eggs that have a dark orange yolk das any body seen eggs like that?

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: ivanos

                              yes T&T sell those orangy egg yolks. It's called country golden yolks free range but not organic.

                              1. re: ivanos

                                Many people who keep enough hens so they can sell the eggs at farmer's markets add a food supplement that turns the yolks orangy.
                                What you must find is a real farmer who has a bunch of chicken actually running around the yard. Not easy to find one that has an 'egg stand/cooler' at the roadside anymore. Too many thieves about. Ask around. Get to know and trust one of these farmers. You may end up getting honest to goodness free range chickens and eggs.
                                There is no such thing as any grocery store selling the real thing. Way too costly.

                                1. re: Puffin3

                                  Doesn't Mayor Moonbeam have some chickens running around in his yard ? ;-)

                              2. look for "cage free" eggs at the farmers' markets, or get to know a farmer

                                1. I'd like to add, are any of the ones listed corn and soy free? And is the feed organic?

                                  1. Drive around Southlands. A few old school farm places sell very free-range eggs there.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: brokentelephone

                                      They come with jars of Grey Poupon too :-)