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Cocorico project: hens in the city

Supported by the City of Geneva, the Cocorico project offers handy guidelines for reintroducing chicken coops in the city and its gardens. Breeding non-hybrid Swiss hens also encourages us to consider the role of animals and food sovereignty in our society, where industry now supplies the vast majority of the meat consumed by the population.

Un enfant au milieu d'un poulailler

The Cocorico project aims to involve the population in considerations focussing on issues linked to our food. One specific means of rediscovering the relationship being humans and animals and the questions raised by farming involves constructing a small chicken coop at home. Whether you live in the country or the city, there is no ban on keeping hens, either as pets or to lay eggs.

Creating your community chicken coop in the city

If you live in the City of Geneva, Cocorico provides an advisory and monitoring service for the creation of collective urban chicken coops and hen farming, in accordance with the principles of food sovereignty. A manifesto explains why it is pertinent to bring hens back to our districts and villages. It also contains a small, handy user guide to installing your own chicken coop.

Two publications offer help. The first can be downloaded at the bottom of the page while the second can be ordered using the contact details indicated at the bottom of the page:

Examples of urban chicken coop projects

In recent years, thanks to the support provided by Cocorico, several chicken coops have been set up in the City of Geneva and in the surrounding urban municipalities, in particular:

  • a fixed chicken coop in the Cour-Corderie, managed by the user association of the same name. It has attracted considerable interest among the district’s inhabitants. The non-hybrid Swiss breeds of hen were provided by Cocorico;
  • a mobile chicken coop in the Parc Beaulieu, managed by the “Les Galinettes urbaines” association. The inhabitants take turns maintaining it on a daily basis in exchange for eggs;
  • a chicken coop installed at the foot of the Tours de Carouge;
  • two chicken coops managed by the social services of the Town of Onex.

Numerous collective projects are under development in other districts of the municipality or on the outskirts. The Cocorico project has also contributed to the emergence of several private chicken coops either through housing cooperatives or set up by private individuals.

Making the population aware of the issues of industrial production

With the support of the City of Geneva, Cocorico has published an information brochure, which can be ordered via the contact details at the bottom of the page, providing information and making the population aware of issues relating to our food: 

“Faut-il abandonner la poule à l’industrie?”, April 2013, Les Cueillettes de Landecy, CHF 9

A handful of multinationals around the world have taken over the genetic heritage of farm animals. In western countries, almost 100% of poultry on the market – including organic produce – is supplied by these firms. An increasing number of stock farmers work under the aegis of large-scale distributors, who decide which hens to breed and how.

So how can we increase the involvement of citizens in the decision-making process relating to food? What is the role of farmers? To what extent do we want industry to determine the life cycle of animals and decide what we eat?


Projet Cocorico

Reto Cadotsch

Les cueillettes de Landécy

Quai Capo d’Istria 9





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Article modifié le 27.02.2020 à 08:40