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Jan 15, 2013 05:40 PM

What brand of poultry to you buy from Publix, Win-Dixie, or Sweet Bay?

Because I'm fairly new to the area I'm not familiar with the brands of poultry sold here. Could someone please tell me which brands you feel taste reasonably good? I'm not expecting miracles here. I just want something that won't make me not want to ever eat chicken again. I've already been through that once since I moved here and I don't want to go through it again! (it's probably a boring story so I'll spare you.)

For what it's worth, I used to buy Tyson chicken, I thought it was fine, especially their flash frozen parts, but I can rarely find even their chicken wings or tenders here. It's always hit and miss, more miss than hit really. I'd just like some fairly good chicken breasts and thighs preferably with the skin and bone.

Any suggestions and or opinions are very much appreciated. Thank you!

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  1. The Publix brand is in my opinion the highest quality chicken I've found so far, very good. The SweetBay brand always looked kind of 'sickly' to me but tasted ok I guess.

    Down here the Perdue and Tyson brands of chicken are injected with up to 15% salt water. Besides increasing the weight (paying for a pound of water for every 7 lbs of chicken), it gives the chicken a slight rubbery texture and weird flavor.

    I believe wal-mart sells the tyson chicken wings and tenders.

    11 Replies
    1. re: ElGimpo

      In my opinion, Publix chicken breasts are dry and tasteless. The other parts are HUGE (like, legs and thighs shouldn't be almost the same size as mine).

      1. re: Little T.

        Steroids are what cause chicken to be so immense in size. According to one news source the size of a chicken has increased over 100% since our grandparents bought chicken.

        1. re: imsiegfried

          It is illegal in the U.S. to give steroids to chickens.

          1. re: imsiegfried

            It is the breeding that produces oversized breasts on chickens that are raised commercially in "factory farms". these birds are slaughtered after 10-12 weeks of life in very inhumane conditions, since their hearts give out and the mortality goes way up the older they get after this optimum number of weeks. The birds get so heavy that the legs often cannot support the body weight and you will see many birds hobbling around with broken legs.
            To answer the post; Publix sells a brand called "Murray's", these are raised in somewhat better conditions, and the meat is not soft and mushy like factory raised birds.
            Look at the New York Times article below to see how marketing of Purdue Chickens does not reflect the reality of factory farming.


          2. re: Little T.

            You made me laugh because I grabbed a tray of bone in skin on chicken thighs in Safeway a few months back (here in N Calif.) and I just happened to take a good look at them.They were huge! The size of a fat baby's thighs! I was horrified. ( I generally bought whole chickens to butcher or the bags of BS breast filets not paks of thighs) I flipped my lid and accosted a man working in the meat section asking him "what is wrong with these things? They are human size?" He was like "duh I dunno I guess they come like that".I just could not buy those nasty things and that is when I started posting on Chowhound to get answers about those chicken thighs!

          3. re: ElGimpo

            They are doing the same (pumped) thing to pork. Takes a lot longer to cook it & there is no flavor. With water being 8 lbs per gal & boneless chicken breast being about $2.50, that is some very pricey water.

            1. re: ElGimpo

              I tasted Publix chicken last week, this is not meat, this is not chicken. The stuff has no taste beside the taste of the suit these animals were fed with. It has no consistency, I had the impression that I was eating some kind of mashed something. I am french and not used to this type of "food".

              1. re: Frank74

                try their organic brand or try Murray's air-cooled chicken. It's more expensive, but it's closer to the lovely French chickens you're used to.

                1. re: sunshine842

                  I am back in France, I will investigate on that next year.

                  1. re: sunshine842

                    These are the type of chicken I am used too. These are raised by my brother

                    1. re: Frank74

                      you simply aren't going to have a choice of poulet blanc/jaune/noire here...and more's the pity. Nor will you be able to buy plump little poussins or a fat coq for stew. (I far prefer the weather here in Florda, but oh how I miss my volaillere)

                      But if you keep your eyes open, you can find a few independent butchers around, or choose air-cooled chickens that were free-range (similar to pleine air) -- you'll at least be able to enjoy the meal.

                      I do wish I had a source for lovely chickens like those in your photo.

              2. I shop at Publix and usually buy just breasts and prefer the Perdue branded chicken. The Publix branded chicken might come from Perdue for all we know but they are immense breasts. Also it seems to me the Publix branded are not trimmed as well as the Perdue branded, I usually have to take a knife to them to cut away excess chicken fat.

                I don't buy anything from Winn Dixie if I can help it. Sweetbay isn't bad though.

                1. If you're looking for a great chicken for roasting or for a special dish, look for a Murray's air-chilled chicken (usually, but not always, in the organic section)

                  I'm another one who'll order pizza before I buy meat/poultry at Winn-Dixie. Too many horror stories.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: sunshine842

                    I had forgotten about Murray's chicken. If I remember correctly, (always a dicey proposition) they are Kosher chickens and on par in taste with true organic chickens.

                    They cost a lot but are well worth it for special occasions. I think I saw Murray's at one of the larger Publix not too far from here.

                    Thank you

                  2. Publix Greenwise chicken is pretty good.

                    1. We've been happy with The Fresh Market's poultry, and their chicken breasts are $2.99/pound on Tuesdays in January if you want to give them a try at a lower financial risk.

                      They're also very nicely trimmed.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: beachmouse

                        Info from a friend who works in the grocery industry says Publix and Fresh Market chicken is the same.