What types of animal feed are used on organic farms?

Farmers with organic crops and livestock benefit from a constant supply of feed for their livestock. Farmers can use field crops as animal feed and, in turn, organic animals produce organic fertilizer that can be applied to field crops. This also helps farmers feed their livestock more affordably, as store-bought organic feed can cost up to twice what conventional feed costs. When that doesn't happen naturally, farmers must milk the colostrum and feed it to the veal, or obtain the colostrum from somewhere else (it can be frozen).

When you buy certified organic meat products, you can be sure that the animal has not only enjoyed the highest level of animal welfare, but that it has also been fed quality organic feed, free of GMOs, hormones, antibiotics or synthetic pesticides. In fact, organic animal feed is strictly regulated by the government, as is organic food for humans. Overexposure or underexposure to certain nutrients and minerals can immediately affect animal health, which is why organic farmers closely monitor what their animals eat. Remember to always look for an organic certification logo, such as the Australian Certified Organic Bud logo, when you buy your organic animal feed to ensure that it's authentically organic.

While organic feed for different types of livestock can be purchased at retailers and feed mills, many farmers choose to mix their own feed for their animals. While organic animals eat organic feed, all farmers in Alberta are motivated to keep their animals healthy and grow strong with quality nutrition. A study conducted by the University of New England found that fresh manure from feedlots contained alarmingly high populations of antibiotic-resistant bacteria that remained in soils treated with the same manure. We provide services to the organic industry, including all certified and transitioning farmers and processors, and to companies that provide services to the organic sector.

We believe in good, pure and healthy foods that are environmentally friendly, free from genetic modifications and ethically produced with high standards of animal welfare. Inputs allowed in organic production, such as fertilizers approved as organic, can also cost more than non-organic equivalents. Transporting grain to the feedlot increases the farm's overall carbon footprint, while the concentration of animal feces can leach into local soils and waterways.

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