All our fresh broiler and poussin chicken is British and is clearly labelled with the country of origin. Our strict traceability means we can trace our fresh chicken to the farms where it was produced.
All M&S fresh chicken is reared to our M&S Oakham™ specification. Within our speciality range we have corn-fed free range and organic chicken too.
Our M&S Select Farm Assurance standards for chicken have been developed in collaboration with suppliers, industry experts and NGOs. They cover criteria such as traceability and integrity, animal health and welfare, medicines and biosecurity, feed and water, vermin control, facilities for housing and shelter, casualty and fallen stock, depopulation, transport, slaughter, environmental protection, documentation, and worker health, safety and welfare.
We do not permit the feeding of antibiotics or hormones for purposes of growth promotion. Where veterinary medicines are administered due to ill health strict withdrawal periods are met to ensure no traces of the medicine remain in the meat.
We prohibit the addition of any animal or avian derived by-products in any of our poultry feed. This applies to the breeding birds as well as the growing chickens.
Oakham™ chicken is exclusive to M&S and the breed has been specially selected to provide our customers with a succulent flavour. The birds have a bespoke diet which is cereal based with a minimum inclusion of 5% maize.
Oakham™ chickens are reared in controlled environment barns. The birds are housed on straw or wood shavings and have constant access to food and water. The farm controls the temperature and lighting levels in the house.
The birds are also part of an industry-leading campylobacter five-point plan
. The environment in which the birds are housed is enriched to encourage bird movement and activity. The bird’s environment is enriched with natural daylight and straw bales which the birds use for pecking and perching behaviours.
Birds must not be stocked at a density greater than 30kg/m2 where thinning is permitted or 34kg/m2 with no thinning permitted (the industry standard stocking density is 38kg/m2 and thinning is permitted).
Corn-fed free range
Free range chickens are housed in similar houses to Oakham™ birds but have constant daytime access to the range on which they are free to roam.
The birds have a bespoke diet which is cereal based with a minimum inclusion of 50% maize. No artificial pigments are permitted in the feed.
Birds must not be stocked at a density greater than 27.5kg/m2 with only one thinning permitted and the area of range is determined on the basis of 1m2 per bird.
Organic chickens are fed and stocked to the same specifications as free range birds.