Throughout the poultry-keeping world where showing and exhibiting chickens takes place, there is a need for a book of ‘standards’. It is the official reference for all recognised poultry standards in a given geography (eg Great Britain, America, Australia), and contains the complete specifications for each of the currently recognised standardized breeds in that location. It is important to note, however, that one country’s standard for a breed can be very different from another country’s standard for the same breed.
The standard for each breed covers in detail the general characteristics of the breed and for each gender. It also defines the requirements for each plumage colour should the breed have more than one. It also incorporates the breedspecific faults that would result the specimen being marked down.