If you’ve ever had to cut-up a whole chicken by hand, or if you’ve deboned cuts you’ve purchased in the store, you probably know how difficult the process can be. You may also have noticed the changes in whole chickens and chicken cuts over the last several decades. Today, a single chicken carries more meat and can feed more people. This has necessitated changes and improvements in processing equipment and equipment that debones chicken.
But here’s the catch: all chicken in the United States is labeled hormone-free.
That’s right, chicken processors and consumers won’t find any artificial hormones in their chicken. Over the last several decades, chickens have gotten bigger through a variety of methods we will talk about in a later blog. However, growth hormones is not one of those methods. This is great for processors because there is such a high demand for healthy and natural meat cuts currently.
The natural demand for growth-hormone free chicken has not been brought on by consumers, but by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which makes the use of growth-hormones on chicken illegal. The FDA has only allowed the use on cows for beef and for sheep.
Additionally, there is an impractical nature of treating chickens with growth-hormones. If chicken producers were to do this, they would have to inject each chicken three times a day, and when you have thousands upon thousands of chickens on site, it’s simply not possible.
If nothing else, consumers are happy to have growth-hormone free deboned chicken cuts, and they are willing to pay a premium price for them. Stay tuned to the blog to learn more about how chickens have gotten bigger over the last several decades.