One of Australia's main breeders is having trouble selling his chickens says Chris Russell.

The Country's Australian correspondent told Jamie Mackay about Angus Shepherd, who breeds chickens with high quality meat and a deep rich taste.

There's just one problem said Russell.

"When they come out of the oven they look as though they're burnt".

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Shepherd has been breeding black-skinned chickens for 11 years, but still has trouble convincing Australian consumers to purchase his birds said Russell.

The chickens are a traditional part of Chinese cuisine, but Shepherd has been breeding them larger for the Australian market.

"He's bred them up from being tiny little things around 3 or 400 grams. They're now weighing about 800 grams ... he's battling away."

Listen below:

However, all is not lost, as Shepherd has found a discerning market for his unusual- looking chickens.

"They appeal to high-end restaurants because of the quality of their meat. It's a much deeper richer taste than standard chicken meat," said Russell.

Although black-skinned chicken is a popular Chinese dish, Australian consumers are still put off by its appearance. Photo / File
Although black-skinned chicken is a popular Chinese dish, Australian consumers are still put off by its appearance. Photo / File

For now though, the "burnt" look of the bird is still putting Aussie consumers off, an effect which Russell attributes to conditioning.

"Isn't it funny how we're so influenced by what it looks like to the eye – we can't get past conventional ideas that a chicken needs to look nice and brown and roasted and gorgeous on the outside."

Also in today's interview: Russell talks about the cancer court case against Roundup and the upcoming Australian election.

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