A new nationwide poll of 1,000 registered voters reveals incredibly high support for stricter regulations on poultry production aimed at reducing Salmonella poisoning and other illnesses.Here is the press release.

The following are key findings from the survey:

Americans display fairly high awareness of Salmonella poisoning. Overall, 87% of voters have heard about Salmonella poisoning and other illnesses related to eating contaminating poultry. One-in-three have heard a lot about this. Awareness is highest among women and among voters under 50 years old.

Voters overwhelmingly favor a proposal for the USDA to adopt stricter regulations on poultry producing aimed at reducing Salmonella poisoning and other illnesses. In total, 86% of voters favor this proposal, including a stunning 50% who strongly favor it. Support crosses party lines with 89% of Democrats, 84% of independents, and 84% of Republicans favoring the proposal.

Support is equally strong for tougher enforcement of poultry safety standards. An equal 86% of voters favor the following proposal to strengthen enforcement. This proposal also garners bipartisan support with 88% of Democrats, 82% of independents, and 86% of Republicans backing it. The proposal for tougher enforcement of safety standards reads:

Here’s another proposal: If a company fails to meet a safety standard because its poultry product is contaminated by dangerous bacteria, it would be prohibited from selling the contaminated products, and if it fails to meet safety standards repeatedly, the company would not be able to sell any poultry products until it demonstrates that it took steps to prevent contamination in the future.

Support for stronger poultry safety standards remains strong after voters hear arguments in favor of and against it. After voters hear one argument in favor of and one argument against the stronger poultry safety regulations proposal, 74% still favor it, while just 17% oppose it. The arguments in favor of and against it read:

Supporters of the proposal say current poultry safety standards are scientifically out of date and do not protect against serious contamination of chicken and turkey, which itself makes people sick and can lead to other products like lettuce being contaminated in the kitchen by chicken and turkey. We need stronger, science-based standards and enforcement policies to protect the health and safety of Americans.

Opponents of the proposal say it’s an unnecessary new government regulation that will hurt family farmers and drive up the cost of poultry for American consumers. Raw poultry always has some bacteria and needs to be cooked. Instead of new government regulations, we need to educate people on how important it is to fully cook poultry before serving it.


GBAO designed the questionnaire for this national survey of registered voters in the U.S. The survey was conducted November 11-15, 2021. The survey of 1,000 registered voters is subject to a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. The survey was conducted online using a web-based panel. GBAO contracted the research company Dynata to administer the survey by email invitation to its web-based panel, which is regularly updated and consists of over 17 million Americans. The sample was weighted on key demographic variables based on a population of registered voters.