It seems even Waitrose customers are feeling the pinch, with the retailer revealing this week that shoppers are opting for cheaper poultry cuts.

Waitrose said that although customers were still defying the economic downturn to buy free-range poultry, increasing numbers were replacing breasts with legs and thighs to save on shopping costs. Sales of free-range chicken legs and thighs are growing by more than 50% year-on-year compared with chicken breast, which is rising by 10%.

“Many more people are now delighting in the darker cuts of meat,” said Waitrose’s poultry and egg buyer Frances Westerman. 

“We have long championed such cuts in our recipes as we believe thigh and leg meat can produce much more interesting and tasty results. It is also a cost effective way to enjoy high-welfare, great-quality food.”
This week Waitrose also claimed it would become the first supermarket to sell brown free-range turkey thigh meat for sandwiches and salads.