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A broiler is any chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus) that is bred and raised specifically for meat production.[1] Most commercial broilers reach slaughter weight between four[2] and seven weeks of age, although slower growing breeds reach slaughter weight at approximately 14 weeks of age. Typical broilers have white feathers and yellowish skin. Broiler or sometimes broiler-fryer is also used sometimes to refer specifically to younger chickens under 4.5 pounds, as compared with the larger roasters.[3]

Due to extensive breeding selection for rapid early growth and the husbandry used to sustain this, broilers are susceptible to several welfare concerns, particularly skeletal malformation and dysfunction, skin and eye lesions and congestive heart conditions. Management of ventilation, housing, stocking density and in-house procedures must be evaluated regularly to support good welfare of the flock. The breeding stock (broiler-breeders) do grow to maturity but also have their own welfare concerns related to the frustration of a high feeding motivation and beak trimming. Broilers are usually grown as mixed-sex flocks in large sheds under intensive conditions.

The commercial production of broiler chickens for meat consumption is a highly industrialized process. There are two major sectors: (1) rearing birds intended for consumption and (2) rearing parent stock for breeding the meat birds.

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Consumption of broilers is surpassing that of beef in industrialized countries. Demand in Asia is rising.[32]

Worldwide, 86.6 million tonnes of broiler meat were produced in 2014.[33]

As of 2018, the worldwide estimation of broiler chick population is approximately 23 billion.[34]

The commercial production of broiler chickens for meat consumption is a highly industrialized process. There are two major sectors: (1) rearing birds intended for consumption and (2) rearing parent stock for breeding the meat birds.

See also