Simply put, no. The use of steroids and hormones in chicken production has been illegal since 1963 in Canada, over 50 years ago! Thanks to better chicken genetics, advancements in housing, equipment and ventilation, improved management, sanitation and vaccination procedures and better nutrition and diet formulation, the Canadian chicken industry has been able to improve its production significantly without the need for growth promoting supplements.
For example, in the 1960s it took about 12 weeks to raise a chicken to a market weight of 2 kilograms. Today, with the help of research and new technologies, that time has been cut in half to 6 weeks. Broiler chickens (those raised for meat) are housed in climate-controlled barns where they are protected from predators, bad weather and diseases and have free access to food and water. Their feed is nutritionally balanced for optimal growth and they are carefully monitored for stress or illness. Selective breeding has also helped us identify birds that thrive in these controlled conditions and advancements in animal health help us control disease better than before.
Although it has been 50 years since hormones were used in production, some marketers still use “hormone-free’’ or “no added hormones’’ on their labels. Meat, poultry and fish products contain naturally occurring hormones, but no Canadian poultry is raised with the use of added hormones or steroids.
If you have a question about farming please submit it here: https://canadianfoodfocus.org/ask-us/
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