The Dark Side of Supermarket Rotisserie Chickens
Ah, the famous precooked supermarket rotisserie chicken. Easy to pick up as a quick dinner on the way home from work, or to shred and incorporate in your favorite recipes. Plus, they're much cheaper than buying a whole raw chicken. But, you may want to reconsider.
According to a March 4, 2014 article by KCET, grocery stores are able to sell prepared foods, such as precooked chickens, at good prices because they are recycled from the butcher and produce departments, and have often exceeded their sell by dates! By selling the cooked chickens at a low price, grocery stores make less money than they would selling them raw, but much more money than they would if they were to throw the chickens away.
It is important to note that the United States Department of Agriculture has stated that sell-by dates 'help the purchaser to know the time limit to purchase or use the product at its best quality. It is not a safety date'. While supermarket rotisserie chickens and other prepared foods are often not at their prime, they are by no means inedible or dangerous.
Still, if you're looking for the freshest possible meal, it is probably a better idea to pick up a raw chicken and cook that bad boy yourself. The result will likely be much more tasty, too 😊