Are You YolkProud™?

Eggs in a pan being cooked

The Incredible Edible Egg™! Most of you probably heard this slogan coming from your televisions quite a bit in the last few decades. Eggs are amazing! It’s awesome to think that absolutely everything a cute little chick needs for development is in one small nutrient-packed vessel. For backyard chicken keepers like myself, eggs are our trophy. Few things bring me more joy than handing a carton of fresh eggs to my friends and family to enjoy. When someone tries a farm fresh egg for the first time, they always notice the beautiful vibrant color of the yolk! “Wow!” It always makes me smile. I am, without a doubt, YolkProud™!!

Chicken Feed that Focuses on the Yolk

At Kalmbach Feeds, we are committed to producing high quality chicken feeds that you can be proud to feed to your birds. You may have noticed that many of our poultry layer feeds contain YolkProud™. YolkProud™ is an all-natural blend of flower and vegetable extracts that promote vibrant egg yolks. That color that makes our friends and family say, “Wow.” That color that makes us so proud to share our eggs with them! It takes a little more than 24 hours for a single egg to be formed. Interestingly enough, the egg also forms from the inside out. So, the yolk is the very first part of the egg that is developed. Once the entire egg is produced, the yolk will account for about 1/3 of the liquid weight of the egg. The yolk may be small, but it is packed with nutrients!

Yolks are Where the Nutrients Are

If you ask most consumers which portion of the egg is higher in protein, most will probably say the egg white or albumen. After all, people on high protein diets will often eat egg-white omelets or egg-white scrambles. However, almost ½ of the total protein portion of the egg is actually found in the egg yolk. More importantly, nearly all of the fat and most of the vitamins and minerals are found in the egg yolk. All of those nutrients are in one small nutrient-packed vessel. The yolk is also where the hen will deposit pigments from the plants that she has eaten. The color of the yolk is completely dependent on the hen’s diet. In fact, hens that are fed diets with very low levels of plant pigments (e.g. white cornmeal) can have almost colorless yolks. These plant pigments are called xanthophylls and will give the yolk the highly-desirable yellow or orange color that we seek as poultry keepers. The more yellow or orange plant pigments a hen eats, the darker her yolk will become. Because hens that free-range are often consuming lots of different plants with high xanthophyll content, eggs from those hens will often have a brighter, more vibrant color.

Why YolkProud™?

YolkProud™ is loaded with these wonderful all-natural plant compounds that help your hens lay eggs with beautiful, vibrant yolks. YolkProud™ is also very unique because it is more than just one compound. It is a blend of all-natural flower and vegetable extracts that provide lots of different colors. The end result is a beautiful, deep, vibrant yolk color that stands out to anyone that cracks open an egg from a hen given a feed with YolkProud™. I know first-hand how effective YolkProud™ is at promoting that beautiful, vibrant yolk color. While we were developing YolkProud™, I was fortunate enough to be one of the first people to get to test it. I collected a few dozen eggs and stored them in the back of my refrigerator. My hens were already eating a great animal feed and they free-ranged, so their egg yolks already had a really nice color. I then switched to a feed containing YolkProud™. Nothing else changed. The hens still free-ranged and they had feed available 24/7. It takes about 14-21 days for the full effect of YolkProud™ to be noticeable in your hen’s eggs. On day 21, I collected the eggs, and I compared the color of the new eggs to the color of my eggs before feeding YolkProud™. Wow! What a difference! The eggs from the hens fed a feed with YolkProud™ had beautiful, vibrant yolks. I was absolutely hooked. And, to seal the deal, I had a few bags of feed left that did not contain YolkProud™. I switched back to that feed to use it up, and I was quickly disappointed when I saw the color of my egg yolks start to fade. Needless to say, all my hens are eating feed with YolkProud™ now. It really is an all-natural way to make a big difference in the color of your egg yolks. I am absolutely YolkProud™ and I hope you are too!!


Stay tuned! Next week we will continue our celebration of the laying hen. So many of you have asked about feeding kitchen scraps and treats to your hens. We’ll cover some of the best and worst options for our feathered friends!

Nancy Jefferson, Ph.D.

Dr. Nancy Jefferson has been a member of the Nutrition and Technical Services team at Kalmbach Feeds since 2013. She received her Ph.D. from West Virginia University in 2008 and has worked in the feed industry for over 15 years. She lives on a farm in Crown City, OH with her husband, John, and their children. Dr. Jefferson is a passionate poultry enthusiast and loves her chickens! Together, she and her family raise beef cattle and she keeps an ever-growing flock of backyard chickens.