A: We are George and Ben Bostock. We grew up in an organic orcharding family, so organics have been in our blood since we were born.
We started our first organic chicken farm in 2014 and we are the only commercial organic chicken producers in New Zealand.
It’s a lot more work to raise an organic chicken, but we believe that organic chicken tastes better, is better for you and is better for the environment.
We really are hands-on every day. If you need to get hold of us just call our cellphones. If you see us in a supermarket doing tastings stop and say hi, it will probably be one of us. Oh, and that really is us as kids on our logo.
A: This is something that most people find confusing because there is a perception that there isn’t much of a difference between organic and free-range chickens.
Normal free-range farms have no rules regulating what they can farm to. Other free-range producers use a standardised free-range system, and they can claim to be free-range by allowing a small amount of outside access. There is also a huge difference in the food that is given to conventional free-range chickens where imported GMO (Genetically Modified) feed is widespread in the industry.
On the other hand, organic free-range chickens have strict regulations and must maintain a small flock size with much larger areas to roam in. Flock density is tightly controlled, and the entire food chain must be chemical, growth promoter and GMO free.
Organic chickens live longer, happier lives than their free-range whanau, and they are better for you, and better for the environment.
A: Yes. The great thing about an organic standard is that there are strict regulations around how much indoor and outdoor space the chickens should have.
Each of our sheds has over a hectare that the chickens can range freely outside, this is different to a conventional free-range farm where there is no official standard so they can have any amount of outdoor space, no matter how small, and still call it free-range.
Our organic chickens are more free-range than any conventional free-range chicken on the market.
A: We are audited regularly by MPI and by Asure Quality to be able to keep our organic certification.
If we fail those inspections, we wouldn’t be able to call ourselves organic.
A: Our chickens eat only organic feed, everything is non-GMO and we grow the maize for our chicken feed ourselves so we can make sure it is of the highest quality.
Our organic chickens also spend a large part of their day foraging through the orchards for bugs and apples.
A: Organic feed hasn’t had glyphosates (herbicide), synthetic inputs or compound fertilizers as part of its growth.
Conventional feed is mainly GMO feed that is imported from all over the globe, which makes it a lot harder to have control over the quality of your feed.
A: We don’t use any antibiotics, hormones or growth promoters to increase the size of our chickens, that why we raise them much slower than any other chicken provider in New Zealand.
A: Part of the way that chickens are processed is that they need to be cooled down before they can move on to the next stage.
We are the only company in New Zealand to air chill our chickens, which means that we let them cool down in a chilled environment before they move on to the next stage.
All other chicken producers cool their chickens using a chlorine bath. This means that the chickens absorb that chlorinated water into the meat. When this chicken is cooked the watery discharge you see in your pan or grill is this water being expelled.
A: Yes, they really do. The land we raise our chickens on is home to a large orchard of organic apple trees that aren’t used for commercial production anymore.
Our organic chickens love to hunt through the orchard for dropped apples, forage for bugs or just hang out in the shade under the trees.
A: Because our home compostable packaging is made from plant material it will break down by itself when it's put in a compost bin or a worm farm.
Just remove any stickers the retailer has added and put it in your home compost or worm farm. From there the worms will do the work.
If you don't have a compost bin at home don't worry, if you include it in your normal rubbish it will break down in landfill just as well. It really is that simple.
A: Bostock Brothers Organic Chicken can be found at all leading retailer and supermarkets. If your local store doesn’t stock Bostock Brothers Organic Chicken send us an email (Georgeb@bostock.nz) and we’ll get in touch with the store directly, or you can buy online and we’ll deliver straight to your door.