October 23, 2019

Why It Matters Where Your Chicken Comes From

I was invited to Maryland to visit the Perdue Farms chicken houses and processing facilities in September 2019 and I have to say, my eyes were opened. 

I’ve heard that saying “you are what you eat” pretty much my whole life. But let’s be honest, do you really pay that much attention to where your chicken, pork, and steak comes from?!

For years we’ve been fed things like the “dirty dozen” fruits to be organic only. There are literally separate areas & large signage in grocery stores indicating which fruits and vegetables are organic and which are conventionally grown. 

Sadly the same is not true for the meats that we buy and consume. 

And to be completely honest, I never really understood how important it is to pay attention to every single thing that you eat until I did Whole30 for the first time last year. I thought just eating better fruits, more vegetables and less grains was sufficient. 

And then I learned the truth. Our bodies are similar to cars. Give it to right gasoline and it will run until the tank is empty. But let’s say you put say wheat or soy into the tank. What would happen?!

It would sputter. It would shake. The engine would stop working and your car would no longer drive you where you want to go. 

For so long, we’ve been sold this food pyramid that promises if you follow it you will be “healthy.”  But it’s the furthest thing from the truth. The food pyramid is designed to get you to eat certain foods without paying ANY ATTENTION to what is actually IN those foods and WHERE they come from. 

My food diet is paleo-ish, which means I eat a lot of meat, vegetables, and fruit along with potatoes and rice. Meat is the true foundation of my diet. Protein keeps me full and satiated, it gives me good energy, and keeps me lean. 

So that’s that, right?! Meat is, after all, meat… isn’t it?

Well, just like there are organic fruit and vegetables, there is organic meat. That means it’s fed a better diet, the animals live in better conditions, and are raised more humanely. 

Why does this matter?!

Remember after all, we are what we eat! If we eat meat that is feed a poor diet of spoiled grain, that means we are in effect eating spoiled grain. The quality of the meat matters. The way the animals are raised matters. Every step along the way from how eggs are produced to the way animals treated matters. 

It impacts the quality of the meat. It impacts how the meat tastes, and of course, how you feel eating the meat. 

I never gave that much thought to how chicken gets on my plate. I became woke to how important the meat is that I am consuming, and I hope you will too!

Perdue Farms uses virtually all family farmers from laying eggs to final product. 

The eggs are brought to a central facility to be hatched and then distributed to family farmers who actually raise the chickens. 

Why It Matters Where Your Chicken Comes From

Food is all provided by Perdue Farms, a mix of organic corn and soy, created especially for chicken depending on its age (younger chicken are given small pellets while more mature chicken can eat larger food). Perdue Farms tests all of the grain delivered to it several times to ensure it is dried properly, so it doesn’t spoil. 

The chicken are raised in heat-controlled hen-houses with windows to the outside and doors to go outside at their leisure. The chicken have plenty of room to run around, drink, and eat at their leisure. 

No chicken is given any antibiotics, ever. They are given one vaccine shortly after the hatch, and that’s IT!

Why It Matters Where Your Chicken Comes From

Perdue Farms then collects the chicken when it’s time to process it, so they ensure all chicken are treated well and humanely throughout the process. 

This changes the way Perdue Farms chicken tastes. Their chicken is tender, juicy, and absolutely delicious. 

When I got home from my trip, I couldn’t wait to go to the store to find out what organic meats are sold by me.  As an avid home cook, I’ve always loved grocery shopping as it’s the first step in cooking. 

Why It Matters Where Your Chicken Comes From

I was so thrilled to find Perdue Farms Harvestland chicken available at a Walmart by me. Since I live in Los Angeles, it’s a bit harder to currently find Perdue Farms chicken, but that is slowly changing. 

I encourage you to experience the difference in organic versus non-organic chicken for yourself. And also steak, pork, bison, etc. 

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