Georgia is the fourth largest poultry producing region in the world, meaning If Georgia were a country, it would only rank behind the United States, China, and Brazil, respectively.
Georgia has been the nation’s leader in broiler production for 25 consecutive years. The chicken is the closest living relative to the Tyrannosaurus Rex.
The annual chicken consumption per capita in the United States is 87 pounds, which the rest of the world is 24 pounds.
Georgia has 105 counties that each produce over $1 million worth of poultry annually.
The poultry industry annually contributes over $15.1 billion to the Georgia economy, including farmers, processing, and allied industries. (Statewide economic impact of the industry is an estimated $13.5 billion annually - New Georgia Encyclopedia)
Annual production from an average poultry farm could feed 6.3 million people a delicious chicken meal, or 22,000 people for an entire year.
Georgia broiler production accounts for 16% of the nation’s total.
Atlanta is home to the International Poultry expo, and is the primary source of funding for the U.S. Poultry and Egg Association, the world’s largest and most active poultry organization.
Georgia had the greatest representation at the 2009 International Poultry Expo with 3930 attendees, making up roughly a quarter of the total attendees.
The current state bird, the brown thrasher, has no contribution to the state of Georgia economy.
Jesse Jewell is credited with making Gainesville the poultry capital of the world. During the Great Depression, he bought baby chicks and supplied them, along with chicken feed, on credit to cash-poor farmers. Once the chicks were grown, Jewell bought them back at a price that covered his feed costs and also guaranteed the farmers a profit.
Georgia is home to major poultry processors, including Gold Kist, Fieldale Farms, Claxton, Mar- Jac, and Cagle’s.
Chicken has become America’s favorite source of meat protein, surpassing pork in 1985 then displacing beef in the mid 1990s.
In Hall County, the number of farms which raised mainly chickens rose from 57 to 1044 between 1939 and 1950.
By the beginning of World War II, chickens had replaced cotton as Georgia’s leading agricultural moneymaker.
About three-quarters of all Georgia counties commercially produce chicken.
There are more chickens on Earth than there are humans.
Chickens can fly, but not for long. The longest recorded flight of the chicken is only thirteen seconds.
The fear of chickens is called “Alektorophobia”.
The chicken can travel up to nine miles per hour.
The largest ever recorded chicken egg weighed nearly 12 ounces and measured 12.25 inches around.
Chickens experience REM (rapid eye movement) sleep.
Nine egg yolks have been found in one chicken egg.
On average, a hen lays 300 eggs per year.
A chicken with red earlobes will produce brown eggs, and a chicken with white earlobes will produce white eggs.
A chicken is 75% water.
A chicken once had its head cut off and survived for over eighteen months, headless.
A chicken loses its feathers when it becomes stressed.
There are over 150 kinds of domestic chickens.
It takes a hen around 24 hours to lay an egg.
The record for a chicken laying the most eggs in one day is seven.
More than half of all chicken entrees ordered in restaurants are fried.
In 2007, 95% of commercial restaurants had chicken on the menu.
A female chicken under one year of age is called a pullet, and a male chicken is called a cockerel.
Three chickens are necessary to be considered as a real flock.
Chickens roll in the dirt, called a dust bath, in order to kill parasites.
Chickens make sounds with actual meaning, giving different alarms when threatened by different predators.
The waste produced by one chicken in its lifetime can supply enough electricity to run a 100 watt bulb for five hours.
More than 47,000 Georgians are employed by the poultry industry directly.
Another 77,000 state residents work indirectly for the industry - UGA, Georgia Tech, pharmaceutical companies, equipment suppliers, and county agricultural extension offices.