Don’t Wash Raw Chicken


source: Food Standard Agency

We want to protect you and your family from food poisoning in your own home, particularly when handling chicken. The theme of this year’s Food Safety Week is ‘Don’t wash raw chicken.’ This is because of a food bug called campylobacter, the most common cause of food poisoning in the UK. It can be fatal.

Splashing water from washing chicken can spread campylobacter. Thorough cooking kills it.

Campylobacter can be spread easily and just a few bacteria can cause illness. This could come from raw or undercooked chicken, or from contamination due to washing raw chicken. The easiest way to protect yourself and your family is to follow our simple food safety tips every time you prepare food.

Four rules to prevent campylobacter from causing food poisoning:

1. Cover and chill raw chicken.
Cover raw chicken and store at the bottom of the fridge so juices cannot drip on to other foods and contaminate them with food poisoning bacteria.

2. Don’t wash raw chicken.
Cooking will kill any bacteria present, including campylobacter, while washing chicken can spread germs by splashing.3. Wash used utensils.
Thoroughly wash and clean all utensils, chopping boards, and surfaces used to prepare raw chicken. After handling raw chicken, wash hands thoroughly with warm water and soap. This helps avoid cross contamination and stop the spread of campylobacter.

4. Cook chicken thoroughly.
Be sure chicken is steaming hot all the way through before serving. Cut in to the thickest part of the meat and check that it is steaming hot, the juices run clear, and there is no pink meat.

Symptoms of campylobacter infection:
Campylobacter infections typically cause abdominal pain and diarrhoea for two to five days.