Engormix/Poultry Industry/Technical articles

Making things clear: Science-based reasons that chickens are not fed growth hormones

Published on: 8/24/2017
Author/s : Yajaira Esquivel-Hernandez 1, Ricardo E. Ahumada-Cota 1, Matias Attene-Ramos 2, Christine Z. Alvarado 3, Pilar Castaneda-Serrano 4, Gerardo M. Nava 1. / 1 Department of Food Sciences, Universidad Autonoma de Queretaro, Mexico; 2 Department of Biological Sciences, Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada; 3 Department of Poultry Science Department, Texas A&M University, USA; 4 Department of Poultry Science, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico.


Background: Global public concerns about “industrial agriculture” have widely disseminated amongst consumers the myth that chickens are fed growth hormones to produce meat more efficiently. This misleading information regarding the use of hormones in chickens is now a growing health concern among consumer groups.
Scope and Approach: Worldwide, the poultry industry relies on science and technology to define new strategies to improve the health, welfare and performance of animals in production. In this report, we performed a detailed analysis of the poultry science literature and provide the scientific bases explaining why chickens are not fed hormones.
Key Findings and Conclusions: The use of growth hormones in poultry meat production does not occur because i) they are too expensive to be used in chickens, ii) they do not promote growth in poultry and iii) their use is illegal in many countries. Therefore, health providers, policy makers, food professionals, consumer advocates, food producers and veterinarians can use this information to educate consumers and eliminate negative concerns related to hormone use in the poultry industry.
Keywords: Chicken meat, hormones, scientific bases, poultry.
Abstract published in Trends in Food Science & Technology 51 (2016) 106e110. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tifs.2016.01.013. 
Author/s :
Ph.D., Food Science and Poultry Science (Texas A&M University); Master of Science, Food Science and Technology (Texas A&M University); Bachelor of Science, Biomedical Science (Texas A&M University); Professor, Poultry Processing Products, Texas A&M University; Poultry Science Technical Subject Matter Expert, USDA–FSIS; and Technical Service Manager, Arm & Hammer Animal and Food Production
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