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Friday, October 13, 2006

Is there a dirty little secret about frozen chicken?

Banning Fresh Chicken Not Practical1:34 pm, 13 Oct 2006
The Food Safety Authority says it is looking at new ways to reduce rates of campylobacter infection, which it considers will be more effective and practical than stopping sales of fresh chicken. An article in the New Zealand Medical Journal says in May this year the number of campylobacter cases exceeded 400 per 100,000 people for the first time, with an estimated 155,000 infections a year.It links the rise to an increase in fresh chicken consumption.
Gary Moller comments:
I went to a reception last Thursday and was the only person in our family to eat the drumsticks which were delicious. By morning, I was dashing to the toilet and spent the rest of the day parked close to one. It was a most unpleasant experience. Which is why this article about campylobacter caught my attention. Does this mean we should purchase frozen chicken in favour of chilled? Or should we just boycott factory farming and go free-range or vegetarian? Which brings me to a related topic.

Have you ever noticed during the defrosting process that there sometimes seems to be a lot of ice with the frozen chicken that you buy from the supermarket? There could be an explanation.

I was told a story not long ago from a person who worked in a chicken factory. They would process chickens by the tens of thousands daily. Now and then the order would come through from a supermarket chain for XYZ thousand No. 8 size frozen chickens. Quickly one of the process workers would be reassigned to the weighing station with a hose. Any of the "large" ones that were under the minimum No. 8 weight would receive a quick squirt of water in the bag before being sealed and quick-frozen!

Perhaps this is worthy of a Commerce Commission investigation?

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