chicken_1823798c.jpgThe Tests – According to tests on 20 grocery store chickens, picking up a package of chicken in Asda, Morrisons, Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury’s and Tesco could put you at risk of food poisoning. E. coli was found on one of the chickens from Sainsbury’s. Staphylococcus aureus, an MRSA-related bacteria that can cause wound infections, was found on a sample from Asda. Acinetobacter baumannii, which also causes serious wound infections, was found on one chicken from Asda and two from Marks & Spencer. Proteus mirabilis, which can cause urinary tract infections, was found on chickens from Asda, Tesco and Morrisons, and high levels of Micrococcus luteus, which also causes urinary tract infections, were found on a sample from Tesco.

The Grocery Store Response

  • A spokesman for Sainsbury’s said: “We are developing leakproof packaging to help reduce the presence of the bacteria on external packaging and we have food safety advice on all our poultry and raw meat products to ensure they are cooked and handled safely.”
  • An Asda spokesman said: “We have the highest standards of cleanliness in all stores and will continue to ensure all our packaging and food handling processes are first class.”
  • A Morrisons spokesman said: “We ensure all our suppliers observe the highest food safety standards when processing and packing food.”
  • A Marks & Spencer spokesman said: “We take food safety very seriously and have an industry leading position on helping our customers to reduce the risk of food poisoning in the home.”
  • A spokesman for Tesco told its customers that they “should ensure they take the normal precautions that apply to raw chicken, including cooking it thoroughly and washing their hands after touching it.”

I wonder what tests in the United States would find? And, what would be the grocery stores’ response?