February 18, 2005

Wright’s serves food right: Hormone-Free

By J.D. Hawk

Long ago The Knights Templar, a religious order rumored to be the keepers of the legendary Holy Grail, swore an oath of poverty and protect pilgrims on their journey to the holy land. Their altruistic devotion was fueled by a desire to keep Christendom pure.

Though not exactly on par with the exploits of medieval heroes, we now have Wright’s Poultry and their chicken-people to protect us from the impurity of commercial foods with religious-like devotion and purpose. “I specialize only in products that are humanely raised without the use of hormones, antibiotics, or animal byproducts,” manager Matthew Ballard of Wright’s Poultry said.

Wright’s Poultry is located at 1043 Broadway in Chula Vista.

Frank Sanders butchering a chicken for a customer. Wright’s Poultry will prepare an order to fit your needs.

In an age where big corporations pump chemicals into livestock because it fattens them up and increases the profit margin, Wright’s Poultry has given customers a choice of “pure” food. That is to say, chicken, turkey, lamb and even fish which has not been tainted with hormones, antibiotics, animal byproducts and whatever other XYZ chemicals that corporate America is using. Wright’s employs a tracking procedure that “determines where the products come from, who handled them, when and how.”

The issue of treating food with chemicals isn’t a new one. For years, rumors have been circulating around the internet about boys and girls developing, going through puberty at an increaingly younger age. These cyberspace theorist believe it may have something to do with America’s youth eating food saturated with hormones. Though you don’t necessarily have to worry about your daughter looking like Dolly Parton at age nine, or your 10-year-old son’s voice sounding like a radio talk show host with a two-pack-a-day smoking habit, the use of hormones should be viewed with concern.

Large companies use hormones to increase the weight of chickens at an unnatural rate, and antibiotics are used to keep those chickens alive under the diseased and over-cowded conditions. “Most commercial chickens are so sick, that they are about to die before they are slaughtered,” Ballard said. “The conditions are horrible. We’re talking chickens, on top of chickens, on top of chickens eating their own crap— just disgusting. Dissss-gussssss-ting!” Ballard emphasized.

Indeed, according to PETA, 20% of chickens raised commercially suffer leg conditions. The combination of genetic breeding and hormones has raised the average time for a chick to develop into a 5 pound chicken from 85 days in 1950, to 45 days at present. So what’s to say eating these fat chickens won’t turn us into fat-cluckers too? The unnatural bulking up of these chickens has created an odd disproportion. According to PETA The organs of the chickens cannot keep up with the unnatural body increase which is another reason why the chickens are so close to death before they are slaughtered.

Ballard is not totally against killing chickens, his livelihood depends on people eating poultry. And after all, if chickens were bigger and had teeth, they’d most likely run down and eat humans without an inkling of remorse. But for Ballard, and many other San Diegans, the risk of eating livestock treated in such conditions is too great. For those who want a choice on what goes into their bodies, it’s good to know that there are places still out there that have kept our food supply as natural as can be. Call Wright’s Poultry at (619) 422-6145.

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