A winemaker employed our feathered friends to take care of his vineyard.
Forget horses plowing between the vines, the latest trend for maintenance of the vines is the…  hen! A producer of the Loire valley decided to introduce 250 hens on half a hectare of vines for maintenance purposes!
Philippe Boucard , from the Bourgueil vineyard in the Loire Valley, the main vine variety being the Cabernet Franc, has screened off some of his vineyard to accommodate hens, and in particular to avoid foxes attacking his ” feathered employees ” .
” The hens scratch and aerate the soil, cut and eat grass and insects. They will help me a lot in my work, “said Boucard.

The hens are well acclimatized to their new home, but the grower realizes he will have to keep an eye on his hens. “I’ll have to be very careful when the grapes will begin to ripen,” he explains. “It might be too tempting for the birds,” leaving Boucards’ vines without grapes. When the time comes, he will have to relocate the chickens in a park nearby.
However, hens in a vineyard are not a utopia. Boucard has joined up with a local restaurant in the village, who uses the free range eggs from these hens in his dishes. The chickens themselves could possibly end up in the oven.
The restaurateur, of Belgian origin, Simon Vincent said that he intends to offer his customers quality poultry, due to the fact that the hens are free to roam in the wild! “We can also do many things with the eggs, these being the basis for good pastries, croissants and waffles, as well as ice-cream and soft boiled eggs.”

(source: wine searcher )

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