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Never wash raw chicken

Cross contamination from raw poultry is one of the main causes of food poisoning at home.

The simplest way to protect yourself and your family is by following some basic steps.

  1. Never wash raw chicken
  2. Always wash your hands after handling raw chicken, as well as any utensils you use
  3. Wash raw chicken containers before recycling them, rinse them in warm soapy water and take care not to splash any water onto the surrounding areas. It is always a good idea to sanitise the area around the sink after you wash these containers

When you cook chicken properly, you kill all the harmful bacteria, so washing chicken does no good, and possibly a lot of harm.

This is because washing raw chicken can spread food poisoning bacteria around your kitchen. The spray from the sink can travel up to 80cm - an arm’s length. 

This spray is full of bacteria from the raw chicken. It can land on anything near your sink, like clean dishes drying, other food, utensils and chopping boards

So be safe, protect your family and never wash raw chicken.

Who are most at risk?

Food poisoning can range from the very mild to very severe, depending on what bacteria has caused it. And while the symptoms can vary, those most at risk are: children aged under four, pregnant women, the elderly, and those with a compromised immune system or an underlying medical condition.

What is Campylobacter?

Campylobacter is a bacterium which naturally occurs in many animals and is the most common cause of bacterial food poisoning on the island of Ireland. In 2018 there were 4,505 reported cases of Campylobacter infection but the real figure is probably much higher. Poor handling or preparation of raw poultry and meat is one of the main reasons for food poisoning at home but it doesn’t have to be like that – following some basic food steps in the kitchen can protect you from food poisoning bacteria.

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