Farms that feed chickens with marijuana instead of antibiotics are getting higher prices from consumers looking for organic poultry, researchers say.


Workers prepare chicken for sale at the Khlong Toei Market in Bangkok. The Department of Livestock Development is closely monitoring the spread of H5N6 bird flu after the World Health Organization has warned of possible outbreaks following recent cases of infection in China.

Workers cook chicken at the Khlong Toei Market in Bangkok.Adisorn Chabsungnoen / SOAP Images / LightRocket via Getty Images

  • Thai farms have begun feeding chickens with cannabis instead of antibiotics.

  • Researchers at Chiang Mai University say the experiment shows positive signs.

  • Chicken is getting twice the usual price from consumers looking for organic poultry.

Farms growing medical marijuana in northern Thailand feed free-range chickens with cannabis instead of antibiotics, and researchers say the experiment has had promising results.

Researchers at the Faculty of Animal and Aquatic Sciences at Chiang Mai University say less than 10% of the 1,000 chickens on Lampang’s farm have died since the introduction of pots in chicken feed in January 2021. I did.

The findings are still under consideration and cover only one year’s worth of research, but assistant professor Shonpunuto Lumsankul, who led the study, told insiders that cannabis feed seems to be working. Chicken mortality on the farm is the same as in normal season when there are no serious outbreaks. Diseases that kill birdsShe said.

Bird’s special food is made by adding crushed cannabis to food and water, Lumsangkul said. During this time, antibiotics and medicines are not given to or used by chickens.

In addition to healthy chickens, experiments have also allowed farms to sell their birds at higher prices to consumers looking for organic poultry.

According to Lumsangkul, birds are twice as expensive as normal, about $ 1.50 per pound, and mostly want organic chickens that aren’t given antibiotics. She also claimed that chicken (they call it “Ganja Chicken”) is softer and tastier than regular chicken.

“Thai consumers are paying attention to this as the demand for chicken is increasing and many farmers have to use antibiotics. Therefore, some customers want to find safer products. “The assistant professor said.

Lampang farms mainly grow cannabis as one of their main products, but they also raise chickens.

Lampang farms mainly grow cannabis as one of their main products, but they also raise chickens.Shonpunuto Lumsankle

As part of the experiment, Lumsangkul found that her research team could give chickens enhanced levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a marijuana substance that gives users high levels, beyond the legal limits of Thai humans. I said there is.

Earlier this month, Thai government Legalize the sale of cannabis products However, the amount of THC for items that can be consumed is limited to 0.2%. By comparison, farm chickens will sometimes be up to 0.4%, Chompunut said.

“I can’t say that cannabis doesn’t make chickens tall, but they behave normally,” she said.

Dozens of black chickens can be seen in the farmhouse.

The farm has more than 1,000 chickens that have been fed cannabis since January last year.Shonpunuto Lumsankle

Lumsangkul said it wasn’t immediately clear what the full benefits of feeding chicken cannabis were, and it wasn’t known why cannabis kept birds healthy in the first place. However, she said marijuana is likely to contain bioactive compounds or substances that promote metabolic activity and better health that enhance the bird’s immune system.

This study is only a “screening test” so far, and researchers have not yet tested whether cannabis feed helps protect chickens from bird flu and other serious illnesses, Lumsangkul said. Stated.

As for whether people can get higher by eating cannabis-reared chickens, Lumsangkul said there is “no way” this could happen. She said that THC is completely metabolized in chickens before slaughter, so its morphology changes completely by the time it reaches the table.

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