Look for plump birds with smooth, unblemished skin, in secure packaging. When buying birds that are not packaged, buy them from a clean and reputable shop. Do not accept a bird that has changed color or has an unpleasant odor.
It should look slightly pink rather than grey, and it should be slightly warm if it has just been slaughtered. Chicken is highly perishable. Always check the ‘sell-by’ date on the package label.
When buying chicken don’t plan to go anywhere after that – go home directly and refrigerated the chicken immediately. Never leave it in your car for more than 1 hour except in an ice chest.
Chicken is difficult to keep fresh in a home refrigerator, so if you do not plan to cook it within two days of purchase it is wise to freeze it. Promptly discard raw chicken if there is even a hint of an odor.
Rubbing plain (all purpose) flour or lime juice on chicken that has begun to spoil will never make it safe to eat. After handling raw chicken, be sure to wash your hands, countertops, cutting board and knives in hot, soapy water.