I wanted to talk a little bit about chicken today and share some information so you can make educated decisions about the poultry you buy. I also have a delicious recipe here for you that I have been working on with my colleague Elissa – Roasted Chicken with Turmeric. Yum!
According to the American Pastured Poultry Producers Association, in order for a farm to be recognized for raising pastured poultry the birds must be raised directly on green pasture. This type of poultry management is in direct contrast with the more common commercial version of raising poultry, which relies on crowded, inhumane cages, limited or no access to the outdoors, and barns.
Why should we care about how chickens are raised?
There are several reasons why pastured poultry is preferred, both in respect to the humane treatment of the animals and the quality of the egg and meat production.
Below are several points highlighting the details and benefits of pastured raised poultry.
- Poultry is raised directly on green pasture.
- Fresh pasture equates to a cleaner and healthier environment- both for the chickens and for the planet!
- The poultry live off of the pasture, and use the forage as feed
- Forage can be grasses, clover, grubs
- Insects are also part of a bird’s natural diet (chickens are not vegetarians, by the way).
- Most farmers utilize a movable or stationary house for shelter
- Farmer and author Joel Salatin, a notable resource in the pastured poultry community, describes his methodology on raising pastured poultry in his book Pastured Poultry Profits
- According to Salatin’s method the practice of pastured poultry means the birds must be housed in a 10x12x2 foot high house, that is moved a couple of times day around a green pasture. The birds must have access to fresh air, grass and insects but are still protected from predators.
The Poultry –
- Never given antibiotics
- Takes a longer time for birds to reach slaughter weight because they are growing naturally
- Flocks are much smaller, not so “mass-produced”
- Chickens are able to live and eat naturally
The Impact on Eggs & Meat –
- Pasture raised yolks are a much deeper orange color- a result from the beta carotene found in a chicken’s natural diet
- Eggs taste richer, creamier, and are a good source of choline and B12
- Pasture raised poultry is higher in vitamin D3 and E, and has a better ratio of omega 3 fatty acids.
- Overall, pastured poultry is a better source of nutrients for you and is a more sustainable way of raising chickens.
Advice for consumers –
Be aware that the terms “pastured raised”, “cage-free”, “free-range” and “natural” have little standardization in the marketplace. The best way to know your food is to know your farmer! Visit farmers markets, talk to the farmers, and visit farms in your area so you can see for yourself how the animals are being raised. The more educated you are, the healthier you can be!
Roasted Chicken with Tumeric
Pastured poultry with a blend of fresh spices.
Author: Grace Brinton & Elissa Dunlap
Recipe type: Main
- 4 chicken breast, skin on (boneless or split breast)
- 2 T grated fresh tumeric
- 1 Tbl fresh garlic, finely chopped
- ¼ cup parsley, finely chopped
- 1 T rosemary, finely chopped
- ½ tsp salt
- 3 T coconut oil or avocado oil, melted
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Preheat oven to to 375 F degrees.
- Combine all the ingredients except chicken in a bowl.
- Place chicken in an oven safe baking dish.
- Rub marinade under and over skin on all sides.
- Roast for 20 minutes, then baste with the juices that have collected in the pan
- Roast for another 10-20 minutes*, until a thermometer inserted into thickest part of breast registers 165.
- *Final cook time depends on the size of the chicken breast.
The Cornucopia Institute– Organic Egg Scorecard
Tumeric Chicken & Pastured Poultry was last modified: August 5th, 2016 by