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Getting Fresh and Safe Chicken

There’s no doubt in any cook’s mind (or in the mind of anyone who eats it) that chicken is one of the most versatile meats. It can be cooked in a thousand ways, perhaps even more. You can fry it, roast it, bake it, glaze it, grill it, boil it, poach it, sear it, steam it, or even flambé it. There’s just no limit to what you can do with chicken. The only limit is your imagination.

Chicken is something you can have for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even snacks. It is a primal staple that can complement any kind of fare whatever time of the day. And with it being one of the easiest to cook and one of the most sought-after meats, it is also readily available everywhere. However, not all chickens are created equal. The way they are bred and fed can give them different profiles. Here are some guidelines when choosing poultry to cook:


We sometimes take them for granted, but it’s important that we really take a look at the label when shopping for this versatile meat. If you see it labeled as ‘natural,’ you don’t just grab it. Every other brand can also claim to be ‘natural,’ which simply means it has no artificial flavors or color, no preservatives were added and the processing was ‘minimal.’ Look for the ‘organic’ label instead. This is because in countries like the United States, for a farm to use that label, it must meet USTA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) standards and be officially certified through this agency. For chicken to be organic, it has to have been fed 100% organic as well, no antibiotics, no hormones, and no pesticides, among other no-nos.


The regular grocery you go to may not necessarily be the organic type you’re looking for. In fact, even if you go to a shop that specializes in meat products, it may not have the freshest. They can tell you it’s fresh, but you can’t really be sure, unless you’re trained to spot fresh poultry from what’s not. What are your other options? You can go to local co-ops, farmers’ markets, CSAs or Community-Supported Agriculture’s.

Raise Your Own

If you have the time and the space for it, why not raise your own? By doing this, as long as you use organic feeds, you can be 100% sure that the chicken you’ll cook is safe and truly fresh.

By following the guidelines here, you can be sure that the poultry you’ll cook is fresh and safe.

Stephen G John