free range chicken looking into camera
Byron Harrison | Meat

It may seem silly to think that the type of method used in raising chickens can have an affect on the flavor of the meat but it certainly does. A free-range chicken not only leads a stress free life but also enjoys less disease and a great amount of exercise. They are fed quality food and are allowed regular natural sunlight.

In the United States, a chicken that has access to the outdoors is given a free range certification by the US Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service or FSIS. Since the wording for this certification is rather loose, you really should familiarize yourself with the chicken farm of choice and learn exactly how the chickens are raised.

In European countries, the European Union is far stricter in their certification of a free-range chicken by specifying types of open-air runs, shelter and drinking troughs. The amount of free-range chicken is also limited to an acre of ground, giving sufficient room for daily exercise.

A reputable free range chicken and egg farm will be able to meet certain criteria. The land must have adequate sustainable vegetation, outdoor shade, and shelter. Housing for the birds must be protected from predators and be kept clean. The flock should be fed natural food, vitamins, and minerals. Free range chickens are never given growth hormones or antibiotics. Whenever you hear of a mutilation of claws and beaks, you can be sure the facility is not raising free range chicken.

A free-range chicken is not as slow growing as an organic chicken that places even further restrictions on the type of feed that is used. While an organic chicken may be the ultimate in natural meat, there is little difference in the quality of the meat compared to a free-range chicken.

You can tell the difference between the meat of a free-range chicken and other types of chicken. Because these chickens are allowed access to a natural environment that includes grass, dirt and filler-free feed, their life-long upbringing is more substantial than chickens that are housed in cages with no outside activity.

Consumers that buy free range chicken regularly comment that the taste and texture of the meat is outstanding and also note an improvement in health issues they might be experiencing. The areas where free range chicken is an asset to a person’s diet are high blood pressure, heart conditions, weight control, and multiple sclerosis.

Free-range chicken is a good source of protein and vitamins for your diet. For the best choice in preparing and presenting a great poultry recipe, this meat is premier to all others. Your guests will immediately notice the difference.