DailyDirt: How Clean Are Our Chickens?

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

For years, there has been concern over using antibiotics in our food supply, feeding animals "sub-therapeutic" medicines that make them grow bigger. The chicken industry seems to be shifting slowly towards removing certain antibiotics from its farms, but are consumers really aware of what the progress is (and isn't)? If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.

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  • icon
    CK20XX (profile), 17 Oct 2014 @ 5:41pm

    I recommend keeping a few chickens around your property if you are able to. They're kinda like little feathery pigs; they eat all the food you don't want and recycle it into eggs, and they're even happy to eat snakes, spiders, mice, and other pests they can fit down their throats. The eggs they produce will often be healthier than any you can get in the store too; a bright orange yolk indicates a high nutrient content.

    Don't try keeping ducks though as they're a bit harder to take care of. Ducks are like chickens without the survival instinct. Chickens are fully aware of how delicious they are and are always keeping an eye out for predators while ducks think they're on vacation all the time. Trying to keep them out of danger can be like herding cats, plus there's the different environment they need as water fowl, so if you attempt to keep some, be prepared to do a lot of work for the little idiots.

    As for turkeys... they deserve to be shot and eaten. They always have it coming.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Oct 2014 @ 5:45pm

    Concerning the chlor chicken I have recently seen an interview of an ex inspector of the USDA in which was mentioned that the chemicals used in the process eat through concrete. I assume that they spray it on the chicken and the drops then eat through the concrete on the floor. Personally that kind of worries me and I really dont want to eat that stuff.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    JoeCool (profile), 17 Oct 2014 @ 7:43pm

    Chlorinated chickens

    So it's okay for people to swim in chlorinated water, but washing chickens in the same thing grosses them out? Weird...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Manabi (profile), 17 Oct 2014 @ 8:50pm

      Re: Chlorinated chickens

      The chlorination level is different, just like a chlorinated pool has much higher chlorine levels than tap water (when it's treated by chlorine, there are other ways of killing off the microorganisms in it). At higher levels more can get left on the chicken itself, and chlorine is NOT a nice chemical to deal with. That's what people are concerned about.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 18 Oct 2014 @ 12:36am

        Re: Re: Chlorinated chickens

        i wonder how many countries put that shit in their tapwater

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 19 Oct 2014 @ 8:29am

        Re: Re: Chlorinated chickens

        ...just like a chlorinated pool has much higher chlorine levels than tap water...


        Doesn't chlorine evaporate?

        Isn't that why you need to keep adding chlorine to pools even if no one has been swimming in them?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          John Fenderson (profile), 19 Oct 2014 @ 11:43am

          Re: Re: Re: Chlorinated chickens

          It does, yes, which is why you can also dechlorinate water by letting it sit out overnight.

          I don't have a problem with the use of chlorine when processing foods as such. But, like with the use of antibiotics, it can be used to cover up the effects of genuinely terrible food practices, so I take its use as a sign of poor quality.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      John Fenderson (profile), 18 Oct 2014 @ 1:06pm

      Re: Chlorinated chickens

      I eat a lot more chicken than I drink pool water.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Case, 18 Oct 2014 @ 5:35am

    Chemophobia and useful idiots

    The "chlorine chicken" story really is just a prime example of how irrational fears of the public can be utilized.

    All available studies, including those done by the EU's own Food Safety Authority, say that treating foodstuffs with chlorine dioxide if safe. And then there's the fact that chlorine dioxide is already used in the EU for disinfecting produce, without killing anyone. What DID kill people were the "organic" farmers who refuse to use "chemistry", with predictable results

    So, why all the ruckus? Simple protectionism. By playing on the public's fears of "CHEMISTRY!!!!" in food, Weisenhof and other big breeders have conveniently blocked any imported competition, and the green movement, who'd normally like nothing more than take those big industrial farmers down, have become their prime accomplices. And after a busy day of protesting the impending chemical armageddon, they munch a bowl of salad treated with the same stuff...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Tom Betz (profile), 18 Oct 2014 @ 8:31am

    The real problem with chlorinated chicken...

    doing the chlorinating. Chickens end up retaining not-tasty waterwater from the baths, and the chlorine doesn't kill all the salmonella, which means that previously uncontaminated chicken routinely becomes contaminated when it hits the water. That's why I only buy air-chilled chicken. Not only does it taste better because it hasn't been soaked in chlorinated water, studies of supermarket chicken have typically found zero salmonella on air-chilled chicken, while finding universal salmonella contamination to one degree or another on water-chilled chicken.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Case, 18 Oct 2014 @ 9:57am

      Re: The real problem with chlorinated chicken...

      Hate to break it to you, but the chickens don't wear hazmat suits while being air-chilled. If one of the carcasses has salmonella, it will contaminate those hanging next to it, surfaces, gloves...

      studies of supermarket chicken have typically found zero salmonella on air-chilled chicken,

      I guess that's why Europeans take the same precautions for storing and cooking chicken than people elsewhere. And get the same results when not following them.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Tom Betz (profile), 20 Oct 2014 @ 9:44am

        Re: Re: The real problem with chlorinated chicken...

        When did salmonella learn to jump an air gap?

        And I'm talking about air-chilled AMERICAN chicken, Bell & Evans foremost among the brands. Whole Foods sells both Bell & Evans and house-branded air-chilled chicken.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Tom Betz (profile), 20 Oct 2014 @ 9:48am

        Re: Re: The real problem with chlorinated chicken...

        Here's a great Consumer Reports story, citing Bell & Evans as the only source in their survey that produced "clean" chickens.

        http://pllqt.it/7xS6tq

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Tom Betz (profile), 18 Oct 2014 @ 8:33am

    The real problem with chlorinated chicken...

    ... is the chilled water bath doing the chlorinating. etc. I don't have a clue how that sentence was truncated.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Pixelation, 18 Oct 2014 @ 9:21am

    I find it pretty disturbing that the farming industry isn't regulated in regards to the widespread use of antibiotics. Our representatives are asleep at the wheel.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Michael_P_Shipley (profile), 18 Oct 2014 @ 1:10pm

    It's still standard practice on chicken AFOs (Animal Feeding Operations) to dose the birds with arsenic. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/03/23/what-to-know-if-you-ever-want-to-eat-c hicken-again.aspx

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Bet (profile), 19 Oct 2014 @ 11:20am

    Bell & Evans

    Chickens are not given a chlorine bath. They are air chilled to kill germs and keep fresh.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Case, 20 Oct 2014 @ 6:28am

      Re: Bell & Evans

      Chilling does not kill salmonella, they are tough little buggers. Therefore in many cases, air-chilled chicken is still given a spraydown with some disinfectant...

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    BOB R, 19 Oct 2014 @ 11:31am

    TYLOSIN AND VIRGINIAMYCIN

    How can it be that your rant against the two named compounds doesn't note that the former, Tylosin is used specific animal terapies and virginiamycin is not much of a human risk at all? Don't you research these statements before you make them?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Dougger, 19 Oct 2014 @ 12:52pm

    Perdue not Purdue

    Purdue is a university in Indiana.

    Perdue is the East coast chicken empire.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    John Fenderson (profile), 19 Oct 2014 @ 4:35pm

    Re:

    Actually, from a food safety and how healthy the food is, you should be avoiding chicken anyway, organic or not. Those really concerned about food safety, nutrition, and how well-treated the animals are should go with beef or pork.

    The best way to do this with beef is to go in with a 3 or 4 friends and buy half a grass-fed cow directly from the rancher who raised it. You'll be dealing with a real human being from a small operation, you'll be able to actually go and see the cows and that they're being treated decently. You'll need a chest freezer or similar, but you'll have enough meat for about a year (YMMV, but it's a lot of meat).

    When I've done this, the meat + the butchering cost brings the total price to about half what I'd pay for the best cuts retail, and the meat itself is far superior to anything else I've tasted. In fact, I'd never understood what my vegetarian friends were talking about when they said that they could "smell the death" on meat until the first time I went this route. The first time I opened a package of the good stuff, the thing that I noticed was the lack of a particular scent. I was never aware of it until its absence, but now I can smell it on most meat, and describing it as "death" is not too far off. Although, I call the smell "slaughterhouse".

    If you are buying beef or pork from the supermarket, buy the stuff that came from the smallest local farm you can. Go grass-fed for beef (it's what they're meant to eat, it makes them the healthiest, and it makes a big difference in the resulting taste). If you want to minimize e. choli risk then buy solid cuts, the bigger the better, and cut them down further yourself.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    John Fenderson (profile), 19 Oct 2014 @ 4:46pm

    Re:

    Oh, I forgot to mention: chlorine dioxide can be used on chickens which are labeled "organic".

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    SomaGenix, 30 Jan 2015 @ 4:49am

    SomaGenix

    SomaGenix Pharma Ltd.
    Somagenix,a leading supplier of API’s and steroid hormone powders in Hong Kong. Our state of the art facility employs top chemical engineers and technicians while meeting quality assurance and compliance with North American and European standards. Our company allocates a substantial percentage of its investment towards Research and Development as we believe it is crucial in meeting market demands and innovation.
    We are an established and professional company that has been operating for over a decade. We pride ourselves as being a leader in steroid hormone powder production along with a great focus on high quality customer service which sets us apart from the competition.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    hamza, 20 Jun 2017 @ 9:41am

    i wonder how many countries put that shit in their tapwater

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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