Perdue Farms Inc., one of the biggest producers of organic chicken, wants to bring the premium meat to the masses.  The Salisbury, Maryland-based company will convert its Simply Smart prepared chicken brand to organic later this year, Chief Marketing Officer Eric Christianson said this week.

The line, which includes frozen products such as nuggets, tenders and breasts, will be sold at about half the price of comparable organic products at retail, which often go for about $15 a pound, he said. “We expect that we’re going to bring in a huge amount of incremental consumers that to this point haven’t been able to afford organic products,” Christianson said.

U.S. consumers are continuing to clamor for organic goods. Sales in the category rose 6.4 percent to a record $49.4 billion in 2017, according to the Organic Trade Association.

Tyson Foods Inc., the nation’s largest meat company, bought specialty chicken producer Tecumseh Poultry LLC earlier this year and Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. has a new organic facility in North Carolina.

U.S. farmers sold $750 million of organic chickens in 2016, jumping 78 percent from the prior year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. But despite that gain, there are relatively few prepared-chicken products made from organic meat, Christianson said.