I did the unthinkable – I bought a chicken from the grocery store! I know! What was I thinking??
Well, I was thinking:
Is it different?
Are the complaints I hear from others about grocery store chicken accurate?
Can I do something better with my chicken?
Here’s what I know. First of all, my chicken is pasture raised with an organic soy free feed. That means they get plenty of sunshine, fresh grass, all the bugs they can find and room to get up and move around. They get to be chickens!
Grocery store chicken is raised in one of those long chicken houses with up to 40,000 of their closest friends. They are fed a commercial feed that can contain GMOs, pesticides, glycopate (a key ingredient in Roundup), antibiotics just to name a few. Most are fed soy as a protein source, but do your research. Unfermented soy is NOT a health food. (I encourage you to look into those claims). The chickens are kept inside these houses so they do not get outside into the sunshine. They do not get to eat grass and bugs, only feed is given to them.
So getting back to the actual chicken I purchased, other than a few things, the bird looked like mine does. The grocery store bird had more excess skin and fat left on the bird around the cavity and the neck. I’m not sure what the advantage of that is, except to possibly add weight to the product? It was also packaged with the neck, liver, heart and gizzard. Just wondering how many people actually use those items or just throw them away? If they are throw away, that’s additional weight added into the sale price of the chicken. The chicken had the stray pin feather or two. It happens. Can happen to me too, but I try hard to get them all.
I stewed the chicken in water. Nothing else because I wanted to taste the actual chicken, not any other flavorings added to the water. It left a brown bubbly scum across the top of the water and bird. My understanding is these are impurities coming out of the birds. I pulled all the meat off the bones and then tasted it. Ewww, I thought! It had a very mealy and almost paste-y texture to it and not much chicken taste! The comments from other chicken eaters are true. My observations are in line with theirs.
My personal opinion. I did not like the chicken at all. I didn’t like the taste or texture and I definitely do not like the living conditions or “extras” in the feed the chicken ate. After all, you are what your food eats. I didn’t even touch on the transportation to and harvesting of the chicken that goes on with large scale commercial production. I encourage you to do your own research. I think you will be appalled.
All this said, I believe I am doing a very good job and I will continue to grow my own, thank you.
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