Hormones or steroids are not allowed in raising poultry in the United States.
Are you afraid that if you pay less for chicken you’ll get some kind of monster that will alter your personal genome? It’s not necessary to spend more for chicken in order to avoid hormones and steroids, because in the USA it is illegal to use those in raising chickens.
Other facts related to food safety and chickens, according to a United States Department of Agriculture fact sheet on poultry preparation and food safety:
“Antibiotics may be given to prevent disease and increase feed efficiency. A “withdrawal” period is required from the time antibiotics are administered before the bird can be slaughtered. This ensures that no residues are present in the bird’s system.”
“Additives are not allowed on fresh chicken. If chicken is processed, however, additives such as MSG, salt, or sodium erythorbate may be added but must be listed on the label.”
Ever wonder what “mechanically separated” chicken meat is? Or why “fresh” chicken can be colder than ice and rock hard? USDA also has an explanatory sheet about other meat and poultry labeling terms.
If you eat chicken, roasting a chicken is one of the best ways to eat well for little money. The Cheap, Healthy, Good blog has a terrific article on how to use 1 chicken to create 17 healthy meals for a total cost of $26 (and no mayo in any of ‘em!?). WOW.
And of course, you’ll have bones left over no matter how many meals you make out of that chicken. Remember to use those bones and your saved-up vegetable scraps to make delicious chicken stock.