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This is a resource for science and food technology teachers. White striping is a muscle disorder, common in intensively produced chicken. It is caused by selectively breeding chickens to grow fast.

Additional Activities

White striping occurs when a fast-growing muscle fibre exceeds its blood supply. It runs out of oxygen, degenerates or dies, and leaves a fine white stripe of fat and connective tissue. Large numbers of these can be visible in a single chicken breast fillet. Once you are used to looking for them, you will see them readily in a high proportion of standard chicken breasts on sale. 

The resources are designed to maximise student engagement and discussion. The worksheet and interactive PowerPoint presentation introduce the subject with pictures of chicken breasts, from a range of different systems including intensive, free range, and organic, to help students with identification.

Our students’ discussion booklet contains more detailed information and questions. To make this activity as practical as possible, the teachers’ notes include suggestions for a supermarket survey.

Further Learning Films

There is also a short campaign film illustrating the responses of US consumers to being confronted with the issue of white striping and two longer films which can be used to stimulate discussion of intensive vs higher welfare systems of animal farming.

Further Resources

We publish a range of discussion activities, worksheets and other resources which discuss intensive farming vs its alternatives, selective breeding and humane and sustainable food systems for Biology, Food Technology and a range of other subjects including Geography, Religious Studies and PSHE.

We are happy to send a free hard copy of the teachers’ notes and accompanying booklets as well as a class set of the student worksheet. Please email to order these.


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