Where Do Popeyes Get Their Chicken? Find Out Here!


One of the most popular fast-food restaurant chains dedicated entirely to chicken is Popeyes. Even celebrities like Beyonce and popular chefs like the late Anthony Bourdain and David Chang love the chicken over Popeyes. While Popeyes’ spice mix is the cream of the crop in their recipe, where they source their chicken also makes a world of difference. So, where does Popeyes get their chicken?

The main supplier of Popeyes is Columbia Meat distributors, which is based in South Carolina. This distributor sources its meat and chicken from different farms all over the country, such as Pilgrim‘s Pride, Claxton Poultry, Marshall Durbin, Fieldale Farms, and Amick’s Poultry. 

Like any company or large-scale restaurant or fast-food business, Popeyes gets its chicken from many different sources and not just from one. The one thing you need to know, however, is that they get their meat mainly from one main distributor, which has different sources all over the country. This is basically the cycle of food sourcing and distribution in the restaurant business, as Popeyes doesn’t necessarily rely merely on one source.

Personally, I love Popeyes and when I’m not eating there, I like to use Louisiana Seasoning for various food that takes me back to the memories of great popeyes food! Now, where does Popeyes get their chicken?

Read also: Why Is Chicken Yellow?

Where does Popeyes get their chicken?

The chicken wars have always been a thing in the United States as big-name fast food companies have been in a war for the best chicken you can get in America. Among such names, Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, or simply Popeyes, has become one of the best fast-food restaurants in the entire country, thanks largely to its tasty and irresistible chicken. 

Simply put, Popeyes has made it clear that not all fried chickens taste the same as celebrities like Beyonce, and famous TV chefs like Anthony Bourdain and David Chang all swear that Popeyes is one of the best chickens they have ever had in their life.

That said, while we do understand that Popeyes has a proprietary spice mix that is a secret to the public because that is what makes their chicken as tasty as it is, what we should also understand is that the source of the chicken also plays a good role in the overall taste of the end product. 

After all, as long as the chicken is sourced the right way and comes from the right production facilities or farms, Popeyes can ensure that the final product will always have the same consistent taste and quality that the company is known for.

In that regard, where does Popeyes get their chicken?

The thing you need to understand about fast food or large restaurant chains is that they actually source their food and ingredients from different distributors, who also source their ingredients from different farms and food producers all over the country. Even the supplies they use to process their chicken and other products such as knives or other similar kitchen tools are also sourced from other companies.

To that end, the most popular food distributor connected to Popeyes is Diversified Foods and Seasonings (DFS), founded by Al Copeland in 1984 as the main supplier of some of the ingredients that Popeyes needs. In case you didn’t know, Copeland is also the same founder of Popeyes. However, DFS, even though it is Popeyes’ main supplier, only supplies batters, breading, biscuit mixes, sauces and, spice blends that are used by the food company to make its chicken recipe. The distributor of the chicken is another story.

So, instead, Popeyes relies on a company named Columbia Meats to supply their meat and poultry. Columbia Meats is a meat distribution company that not only supplies chicken to Popeyes but also to other restaurants such as KFC, Bojangles’, and Golden Corral. They are famous for selling meat and poultry to mom-and-pop restaurants, but they are also known for supplying the chicken that some big-name companies need. Of course, this includes the aforementioned Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen.

Read also: Why Is Chicken Dry?

Is Popeyes’ chicken all grown in America?

Now that you know where Popeyes gets its chicken from, you might be wondering where Columbia Meats actually source the chicken from. After all, Columbia Meats is only a distribution company that focuses on sourcing their meat and chicken from all sorts of different farms and producers. To that end, they are essentially contracting different farms that directly sell their chicken to Columbia Meats while the latter focuses on processing the chicken.

So, that said, Columbia Meats actually sources its chicken from a lot of different farms that include names such as Pilgrim‘s Pride, Claxton Poultry, Marshall Durbin, Fieldale Farms, and Amick’s Poultry. But do these farms all raise their chicken in America?

Not exactly. That’s because these large-scale farm companies also have locations that can be found not only in America but also in their nearby neighbors. As such, when you are eating at a Popeyes restaurant, you are probably eating chicken that may have come from locations such as Mexico and Canada. This means that Popeyes essentially sources its chickens not just from farms located in America but also in Mexico and Canada depending on where Columbia Meats and the other distribution companies get their chicken from.

Read also: Why Is Meat So Expensive?

Does Popeyes serve cruelty-free chicken?

While some fast-food restaurants focus more on the end goals of their business and the final product, we are now in a day and age where we actually care about what goes into our food and how our food was being treated long before it made its way to our plate. This is where the concept of cruelty-free food comes in as more and more people are looking to eat only in restaurants that promise that they source their food from farms with cruelty-free practices.

To that end, Popeyes is actually one of the companies that have signed on to follow the practices and standards set forth by the Better Chicken Commitment, which aims to make sure that the restaurants that have signed on to it source their chicken from farms and producers that raise their chicken in cruelty-free environments. Such standards include providing more living space to the chickens and also eliminating cages for broiler chickens.

This means that Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen actually has made an effort to make sure that it only sources its chicken from farms and producers that are treating their poultry as humanely as possible. So, for those who are looking to eat in restaurants and fast-food chains that serve cruelty-free chicken, Popeyes should be the way to go.

Omar Abdalla

I’m the owner of JRS and while I love working in a busy restaurant, I also enjoy more peaceful and relaxed cookouts at home.

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