Red Label Chickens

When our local (wonderful) charcuterie hasn’t any chickens when we want one, we occasionally buy a Red Label one in our local Intermarche. The current price for these runs at something over 11 euros a kilo.

I was in Lidl earlier today and they had 1.5kg Red Label chickens priced at 4.99 euros each. That is an insane price - has anyone else seen this sort of thing? I’m supposing the price label must be wrong as the chicken itself has the usual Red Label design on its wrapper. The only thing that is different about it is that the wrapper itself does seem a bit different from what we usually see, but that could be down to the particular supplier. Also,of course, the chickens aren’t usually all the same size.

Any ideas what might be going on?

There has been a big scandal in Germany about Lidl selling cheap chicken at the expense of cruelty to animals. Demonstrations outside Lidl premises and negative online comment too


Big scandal about Lidl’s chickens generally. No way can one sell that price without sacrificing humanity

And from
Les deux études publiées par l’UFC-Que Choisir, WWF et Greenpeace se sont ainsi penchées sur ces appellations pour permettre au consommateur d’y voir plus clair. Concernant les AOP et Label Rouge, l’UFC-Que Choisir pointe des réalités très différentes d’une filière à l’autre. Selon son étude, sur les douze classifications analysées - huit AOP fromagères et quatre viandes Label Rouge - quatre n’offrent en réalité aucune garantie de qualité, pourtant assurée par les signes officiels.

The problem is that a lot is self-certified, and few controls. So whether Red Label criteria have been met is often left to the producer and supermarket to decide.


Thanks for the information @KarenLot and @JaneJones . I had naively assumed that Red Label standards were uniform across the country otherwise what’s the point?

It does explain though why the Red Label sold in Intermarche is pretty good quality (although nothing beats our charcuterie with the good local supplier!)

I must say I’m very disappointed though - voluntary codes, as seen in many sectors, are frequently not reliable! I never buy meat in Lidl anyway but I thought that the example I spotted just had to be wrong. It seems, perhaps, it wasn’t a mistake :roll_eyes:

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That’s a pretty powerful clip. The rising feeder is as ingenious as it is despicable.

I’d go so far as to say they rarely work. In general you get what you inspect, not what you expect and it’s cheaper for firms to lobby than to comply.

Or pay paltry fines…

The standards are uniform, but the monitoring and enforcement isn’t from what I understand. When we used to go on long distance walks we had a rule that we could only eat what we had seen (and basic kitchen cupboard stuff.). I might have to return to that as a policy.

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That makes sense - I was being rather vague in conflating 2 concepts :roll_eyes:

Should that be poultry? :slight_smile:


I missed that, because I stopped watching.



I couldn’t watch it.

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Netto sell Red Label chickens cheaper, but they are usually smaller.

I didn’t want to watch it, and I did so at a bit of a distance as it is sickening. But I eat meat. Not often but I do. So I feel I have to face up to what that means. I watched another of L214’s films in a La Gaulois chicken production unit, and have never been able to buy that brand since.

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Which means it is pretty pointless in the end but hey, keeps some people in pointless jobs.

Sadly much the same as any intensly reared chicken, could be Lidl, could be anyone.

The thing is that Red Label isn’t supposed to be intensively reared and gets chosen by people for that sort of reason.

Exactly! So a bunch of red tractor people who either do not have the resources to police the farms or lazy useless people who do nothing about the situation so rendering it pointless?

Frankly, I no longer go by the “Label” for anything I buy to eat…
I read the small print, which says where the product was raised, how it was treated and fed etc… if all I can’t get “the right answers” … I don’t buy it…
I’m looking for French product, raised decently, fed properly etc etc…

I’m driving OH mad, taking so long to peer at the packaging… but that’s just too bad… If I can’t buy local products (where I know the details)… I have to try and get the best alternative… :crossed_fingers: :+1:


That’s my problem…the labels give origin, sometimes even the farm which is great if one could visit them (sometimes possible, but by no means universal). They say broadly what they were fed on, also good.

But in terms of welfare I can rarely find anything concrete, just warm words and pictures of smiling farmer hugging a chicken/pig/calf - which means precisely nothing. So the best there is are things like Red Label, and if these are often not complied with then what?

It is one of the biggest differences I notice between UK and France. In the UK there is a lot of information about how animals are raised, and in France very, very little.

What do you find on labels that says how the animal was treated?

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“free-range” is one good note…

Not necessarily, especially with bird flu.