What is humanity’s greatest technological achievement? Is it the Internet? Antibiotics? Space travel? According to Emelyn Rude, food writer and author of the book, the chicken may at least deserve a nomination.
- Growing chickens is one of the fastest - and most efficient - ways of producing protein. The commercial broiler, one of the most common commercially raised breeds of chicken, “grows so fat so fast, that if it were a human baby born six pounds, within two months that baby would weigh 660 pounds,” says Rude.
- How did chicken go from a high-priced treat to a daily staple? Rude says the “cholesterol scare” of the 1970s played a big role. As scientists and the government began encouraging people to eat less red meat - and selective breeding made chicken cheaper and faster to produce - it began replacing pork and beef as a staple protein of the American diet.
- Chickens aren’t just for eating and laying eggs. They’ve also played a part in many important technological breakthroughs. Louis Pasteur discovered vaccines while trying to cure fowl cholera, and Charles Darwin based many of his theories about evolution on selective chicken breeding.
- How the chicken conquered the world, via .
- on the chicken of the future.
- on one artist’s effort to breed the perfect chicken.