Free Range Versus Pastured: A Guide

Free Range labels are regulated by the USDA only for poultry produced for meat. The requirements are very high: poultry can use the label if the chicken had any access to the outdoors each day for some unspecified period of time; it could be just a few minutes, and does not assure that the animal ever actually went outdoors to roam freely.

 

Pastured poultry is a sustainable agriculture technique that calls for the raising of laying chickens, meat chickens (broilers), and/or turkeys on pasture, as opposed to indoor confinement. Humane treatment and the perceived health benefits of pastured poultry are causing an increase in demand for such products. 

 


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