Forget free-range - the tastiest chickens are the ones in cages
By Richard Gray, Science Correspondent
Last Updated: 12:01am BST /07/2008
Food scientists assessed the quality of birds raised in a variety of conditions and found those that were intensively farmed had the best flavour, while those reared under organic guidelines were the least tasty.
Their findings contradict claims by campaigners who insist that organic and free-range chickens produce tastier, healthier meat because they have more freedom to move around and are given better food.
A panel of 10 taste experts sampled meat from 120 cage-reared, maize-fed, organic or free-range birds. They found the cage-reared chicken meat the least acidic, though it had a less attractive colour than other types. Dr Paul Warriss, who led the study at Bristol University's school of veterinary science, said: "In general, higher ratings were given for texture, juiciness, flavour and overall preference for meat from the birds reared in the standard system." Read More
Some animal rights activists have used the argument that the meat is better from birds that are raised outside, however this study disagrees. If some producers prefer to raise birds in a cage free system that is perfectly fine, but it is imperative that we all work together to defeat the ban on cages that Californian’s will be voting on this fall. Producers should have that choice.