Stores struggling to keep chickens in stock, chicks harder to find this season

Published: Mar. 18, 2023 at 4:04 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - If you’re looking to start your own backyard flock of chickens or expand one you already have, you could be facing some unique challenges this season.

One store in Lubbock is struggling to even keep chicks in stock.

The metal bins at HF&C Feeds in Lubbock, at 82nd and Zadar Avenue, were once full of 250 chicks.

“That first day was very like - everyone was coming in - they wanted to look at them, they wanted to buy them and everything,” the assistant manager of HF&C Jessica Baker said.

Those bins have now been empty for more than a week.

“They’ve gone a lot faster,” Baker said.

Baker says the problem started when they first decided to bring chicks in for sale.

“We checked with I think three different hatcheries before we found one that actually had them in stock and could get them to us by this Easter time,” Baker said.

Customers flocked to the store as soon as the post was up on Facebook advertising the chicks were in.

“No one was coming in just to get like one or two,” Baker said. “I think the last guy that cleared us out, he got like 16 or something all at one time.”

Some customers were looking to start their own backyard flock for the first time. For most though, it’s not their first rodeo.

“A lot of the customers have been like returning, like they’ve got older chickens and they’re needing to get some new ones in their flock,” Baker said.

Baker says a lot of the hatcheries wouldn’t have chicks delivered until June at the earliest. She’s unsure if the problem lies with chicks coming later in the season or the demand.

“I think it’s probably a little bit of both,” Baker said.

HF&C expects their next shipment on Mar. 28, when there will be 300 more chicks up for sale.