The Korean native chicken (KNC) is believed to have existed in the Korean Peninsula more than 1,400 years ago. Since then, KNC have been bred only by private farmers in rural areas of Korea. In 1994, a KNC conservation program was established by the Korean government and, as a result, five lines were restored. KNC are considered to have a unique taste and texture that is more attractive to Korean consumers than meat from commercial broilers. However, the price of KNC is relatively high, which is mainly due to the breed's low growth rate, hence the limitations for industrial applications. In addition, their unique taste and texture in comparison with that of other broilers has been evaluated by scientists over the past few years. The general composition, physiochemical traits, content of taste-active and endogenous bioactive compounds and sensory quality of KNC meat, as well as breeding history are reviewed in this paper. The information from this review can be used for the development of commercial KNC breeds and can be applied to models for the commercialisation of native chicken breeds in developing countries.
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