If you are in Luzon, you will always hear “Tagalog na manok”, in the Visayas especially in rural areas, you will be offered “Bisaya nga manok”, but in any case regardless of where you are, you can always ask for “native na manok”. These three terms are actually interchangeable but in this article, we are going to explain how to properly use these terms.
The Tagalog, native, and Bisaya chicken means the same breed or line of breeds – our own heritage breeds. You can find the lists of these native chicken breeds here.
In the Visayas, especially in Negros Island, however, any chicken that is raised freely and not caged is sometimes called native. Even if the chicken is colored broiler like Hubbard, Sasso, or Dominant CZ, once they are pastured, their taste resembles the native breeds because they eat the same food as the native chickens.
In fact, there is only a small population of 100% of native chickens left in our backyards. Most free-range chickens especially in rural areas are mixed with either colored broiler or fighting cocks.
If we really base on the taste of the meat, there are only two major types of chicken meats that differ from each other: The 45-days broiler and the native chicken.
The meat of the 45-days old Cobb-Vantress broiler is far different than that of the native chicken. They are soft but not as tasty as the native. The colored broilers, however, when raised as free-range, could also have the same or closer taste with the native. However, if they are raised inside confined cages, they will also taste closely similar to the 45-days old broiler.
If you want to taste an authentic chicken tinola, look for a native chicken, but if you want a soft inasal, go with 45-days broiler chicken meat.
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