Chris Pinard started his free range poultry business ten years ago on the family farm at South Godstone and we’ve been buying his wonderful chickens ever since.
Now Chris is growing about 800 chickens on site at any one time, and finishing about 100 a week. His system is totally free range, with the birds given access to open grass paddocks, with food, water and shelter available whenever they need them. Their diet is totally natural, with 85% of it being grown on the farm, supplemented with some gluten free soya when it’s required.
Whilst a typical supermarket chicken is grown intensively in about 35 days, Chris’s birds mature naturally for 11 to 13 weeks, so there really is no comparison to the life the bird has enjoyed, and the resulting eating quality. The welfare of his flock is paramount, to the extent that Chris slaughters all his birds on the farm, just a few paces from where they are reared, to keep any stress to an absolute minimum.
The inherent breed characteristics – an old French breed called Hubbard – and the free range rearing system ensures that Chris’s chickens grow slowly, developing a strong bone structure before ‘filling out’. The result is a good sized bird with a firm flesh, a natural fat layer and dry skin – in other words, chicken ‘as it used to be’, full of texture and flavour. The chickens we sell are all oven-ready, with giblets, ranging in size from about 2.0kg (which will serve 4 people) to 2.6kg (which should generously serve up to 6 adults, and give you delicious leftovers too!) Seasonally we may also be able to offer larger birds, which are perfect for special occasions.
Farm to butcher - 17 miles