Someone once asked me: “what is the difference between free range chicken and farm raised chicken?” I responded “barb wire!” Now what about urban chickens that have free rein? “Diapers!”
I have posted about the pet industry in the past. A quick Google search to the APPA (American Pet Products Association) revealed that the estimated total 2012 U.S. Pet Industry Expenditures will be $55.53 billion, up 4.1 percent from actual 2012 spending of $53.33 billion. According to their Owners Survey, 62% of U.S. Households own a pet; that equates to 72.9 million homes.
Yesterday I read about the growing popularity of backyard, urban poultry farming. According to a report recently released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 0.8 percent of the households in major cities like NYC, Miami, L.A. and Denver own chickens. They project that in the next few years this number will be closer to 4 percent. More importantly I learned backyard chickens have cultivated a new, multimillion dollar niche industry for chicken pet supplies. A popular item is diapers so chickens do not soil their owner’s rugs. Two emerging companies are Pampered Poultry and MyPetChicken.com. In addition to diapers, they also sell chicken treats like “chicken crack” which is a feed consisting of organic (of course!) grains, seeds, dried meal worms and dried river shrimp. Thanks to the urban chicken trend, a specialty magazine called Backyard Poultry is now being published!
Are you ready to be an urban farmer who shops for chicken supplies and designer diapers at a Chik Boutique?