Attributable to Tom Super, National Chicken Council spokesperson:
“We are aware that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating illnesses attributed to Salmonella Infantis, reported in multiple states over the last six months.”
The CDC says epidemiological evidence suggests raw chicken products and raw chicken pet food are possible sources. No specific product, brand, facility or company has been linked to the illnesses, nor is the CDC recommending consumers stop eating chicken.
“The chicken industry is cooperating fully with the CDC and USDA in their investigation.
“Food safety is the top priority for companies that produce and process chicken in the United States, and the industry prides itself on an excellent track record of delivering safe, affordable and nutritious food both domestically and abroad. Americans eat about 160 million servings of chicken every day, and virtually all of them are eaten safely. We take the safety of chicken very seriously – our families eat the same chicken as you and yours.
“Though we’ve collectively made tremendous progress in reducing Salmonella, the fact is raw chicken is not sterile, and any raw agricultural product, whether its fresh fruit, vegetables, fish, meat or poultry, is susceptible to naturally occurring bacteria that could make someone sick if improperly handled or cooked.
“We all play an important role in ensuring food safety for our families, and there are steps people can take in the home to significantly reduce any risk. For raw chicken, that means washing your hands before and after contact, not cross contaminating other surfaces, cutting boards, knives, etc. and cooking chicken to a minimum internal temperature of 165 F. Even though bacteria may be resistant to some antibiotics, it is not resistant to the proper heat from an oven or grill.”
More safe handling and cooking information is available by clicking here.