It’s easy to take chicken for granted, because it’s always available when you need a tasty, nutritious meal. But the business of chicken is a huge team effort. Getting chicken from the farm to your table takes over 25,000 family farms and 1.5 million people who are directly and indirectly employed by the broiler industry.

The following column was posted today on the Chicken Check In blog. It can be found here and below.

These statistics provide a quick overview of how Americans ate, purchased and raised chicken in 2022. Hungry for more chicken facts? Check out our chicken stats and facts page.

The Award for No. 1 Protein Goes to…Chicken

Chicken is the most popular protein in the U.S. In 2022, each American ate 100.6 pounds of chicken on average, an increase from the year before. Chicken is an American staple, from everyday meals to big events. This past Super Bowl weekend alone, the National Chicken Council estimated that Americans devoured 1.45 billion wings.

It’s not hard to see why families choose chicken time after time. Shoppers across the nation love its taste, versatility and nutrition.

25,000 Family Farmers Who Care

About 25,000 family farmers raise the vast majority (95%) of broiler chickens in the U.S. These farmers are trained in animal welfare to provide a safe, healthy and low-stress environment. Family farms like the Rhodes family of Maryland and the Baker family of Delaware are dedicated to their birds.

“Watching our freshly hatched chicks arrive, caring for them, making sure that they have enough food and water, and that they have the perfect environment to grow and thrive so that we can provide healthy affordable food for the consumer is our top priority as farmers.” – Ryan and Rachel Rhodes (pictured left)

“Animals raised in a caring farm environment are never short of food, water, proper shelter, safety, comfort and adequate veterinary care.” – Terry Baker 

Find out more about life on American chicken farms and how broiler chickens are raised.  

Making the Most Chicken

The U.S. is #1 in the world in broiler production. In 2022, U.S. farmers raised 9.2 billion chickens for food. That’s more chickens than people on Earth!

As the chicken industry responds to a growing demand for chicken, sustainability remains top of mind. Farmers are continuously adopting new technology and tools to responsibly manage their land, water and energy. As a result, chicken production in the U.S. is more sustainable than ever before. For instance, today it takes 75% fewer resources to produce the same amount of chicken than it did in 1965.

Learn more about how today’s chickens are raised in our FAQs section.

Providing 1.5 Million Jobs
In the U.S., the chicken industry directly employs about 381,000 people. But if you count all the people who grow feed for the chickens, drive delivery trucks, serve chicken wings, make the packaging, or are otherwise indirectly employed, that’s a total of 1.5 million jobs.  

Chicken is the most affordable source of high-quality protein in the meat case. That makes it an accessible source of protein that retailers and consumers depend on.

From the farm to your table, and everywhere in between, chicken is vital to the American economy. To know more about chicken’s economic impact where you live, visit Chicken Feeds America

Learn more about how today’s chickens are raised in our FAQs section.