Sunflower Heart Quality! Is there a difference?

Hello all,

Long time nature lover, first time community forum poster!

I just wanted to know what people’s opinions were on the quality of sunflower hearts out there in relation to quality and price. Forgive me if this is something that has already been answered, I looked but couldn’t find much of an answer.

I was in Home Bargains the other day and noticed that 13kg of Sunflower hearts were only £13.00! They looked fine to me but I couldn’t help but think about much the difference in price compared to others brands and stockists. I was planning to start buying the my sunflower hearts in bulk from The Really Wild bird food company which states that their sunflower hearts are bakery grade and therefore better quality. Has anyone else bought these?

I guess what I’m asking is have you noticed a difference in quality and intern bird numbers by buying from more ‘quality’ suppliers such as RSPB, The Really Wild Bird food company or Vine House farm? I wouldn’t mind paying more if there was a worthwhile difference in quality and would therefore help the wildlife. 

Thank you for your responses, I look forward to hearing from you.


  • Hi Mark and welcome to the Community.

    I think it's hard for us to know what the nutritional value of the the various sunflower hearts is. I certainly can't tell just by looking at them and I don't know if any tests have been done.

    Mark M said:
    The Really Wild bird food company which states that their sunflower hearts are bakery grade and therefore better quality. Has anyone else bought these?

    In my case, yes. I get my supplies from them and have no complaints. I like the fact that they are grown on their own farm which helps our farmers and I like the next day delivery service. I think they are more expensive than some other places but I don't have a discount store near me. I believe Vine House Farm also grow their own and donate some profits to the Wildlife Trusts.

    I'm pretty sure that other Forum members use cheaper sunflower hearts so it will be interesting to hear their opinions. You could always give the discount variety a try and see how the birds react.



    My Flickr Photostream 

  • In reply to TeeJay:

    As Tony says, there are high-grade bird foods like sunflower hearts and peanuts which may cost a little more but worth the extra if is helping our local farmers.    I buy from a large countryside store which has their own mill for some of the seeds but have found the birds are not so fussy and will eat both premium grade and other sunflower hearts I have purchased from Costco warehouse at less than £12 for 12.6 kg.    The only thing I don't buy is nyger seed and any mixed seed which has wheat in it as the birds wouldn't touch it and in the long run it proves more expensive than the quality products.    Whole peanuts can go mouldy if they get damp/wet so I only top up the feeders with a limited amount,   that goes for most of the seeds so it remains fresher - I fill to just above the top perch and then don't refill till empty so I can change to a clean feeder if necessary or at least wipe the perches.    


    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • In reply to HAZY:

    I buy all of my bird food and bird seed from Wilco’s. I never buy bird food or bird seed from the RSPB as it’s so expensive from RSPB shops.



  • In reply to THOMO:

    Hi Mark, welcome from me up in Caithness, at the very top of Scotland. I feed sunflower hearts. I have purchased them from our 2 local farmers stores. I buy the large bags and from one of the suppliers they cost £28 for 22.5g. I have a tall feeder (18") roughly and the goldfinches will empty that in a couple of days!

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

  • In reply to Catlady:

    Thanks for all your feedback guys, much appreciated! I think I’m going to start buying online from the likes of The really wild bird food company and vine house farm. Even if there isn’t much difference in quality I’d rather help the farmers.

  • In reply to Mark M:

    Hi Mark I get mine from here in 30kg/£31.50 bags next day delivery

    My Flickr photos

  • In reply to Alan.:

    Thanks Alan, I’ve seen this place before. It’s only about a 30 minute drive from my house so might give them a try. I’ve seen on their website that the sunflower hearts are bakery quality.

  • I buy the13kg bags of sunflower hearts from Home Bargains and the birds love them. My main feeder has six openings and I have to fill it up most days. I also buy Suet Feasts as they do a box of 6 squares for about £2.99. Their suet pellets and mealworms, which I put into window feeders, are also a lot cheaper than elsewhere.

    I screwed cup hooks into the wooden soffit board above my window ledge and hang my feeders on them. They are about a foot away from my window and I can sit in bed and watch the birds feeding. They are safe there from my two cats as it is so high up. The downside is that the windows get dirty and I have to clean them quite often.

    Note, not all Home Bargain shops sell the large bags but their smaller bags are still cheaper than elsewhere.
  • Hi I am a new poster for this and I'm really pleased to see the comments about sunflower hearts etc as I have a home bargains store near me I'll be giving them a try soon its expensive feeding birds but so worth it.