Llandilo heritage cockerels - both ordinary and very special
Ever eaten a rooster laid by a chicken bred specifically to produce eggs?
For most of us, the answer is 'never'. Roosters from breeds that specialise in egg production aren't considered great eating and they can't produce eggs so they're largely seen as an irritating waste product and dispensed with on the day they hatch. It's not pretty.
It's the same in the conventional dairy industry. Cattle breeds that specialise in milk production aren't generally considered particularly good eating and the male calves can't produce milk so they're not worth growing out either.
But not everyone sees things this way.
Enter Ryan and Rebecca Cirello of R & R Roosters and their fabulous heritage cockerel farm!
Situated at Llandilo, a semi-rural area near Windsor on Sydney's furthest fringe, Ryan and Rebecca have built a small business around rescuing day-old male chicks from egg producers, growing them out on pasture until just before they start to mature and then selling them as table birds.
So pictured here are a couple of young chaps who escaped the usual fate and instead, spent 16 weeks roaming around on pastures out near Windsor. True, they ended up in our butchery, ready for your table, but that's a far more useful and dignified fate that the one that faces most day-old male chicks in the egg industry.
We've just received our first batch and cooked one for lunch today and it was delicious, firm-textured and flavoursome.
This is a great product from every angle; it's a wonderful story of turning waste into nutrition, it adds precious diversity in a monocultural meat chicken industry, it supports a local food business in the Sydney basin and they taste damn good too!
Do yourself a favour. Waste not, want not.
Llandilo Heritage Cockerels - rescued from the egg industry
- Rhode Island Red / Australorp breed
- 16 week old, pasture-raised
- Processed at the on-farm abattoir
- Air-dried at Feather and Bone
- Approximately 1.5 kg per bird
- Available now at the butchery!