Bleached chicken


The use of bleach or any other microbial substance to treat poultry is currently forbidden in the EU, but not in the US. Despite the opposition of 16 agricultural ministers from across Europe, American pressure may soon cause the ban to be lifted so that US-treated chicken can be exported to the EU.

The US authorities argue that the anti-microbials improve food safety, but pressure groups in Europe suggest that because producers will know the meat will be decontaminated before being sold they will make less effort to avoid bacterial contamination. This, they fear, could also have a negative effect on animal welfare.

Despite vocal US opposition the EU is currently insisting that, should the use of anti- microbials be allowed, the meat would have to be labelled – but what of chicken meat sold in restaurants or as part of another dish?

Courtesy of the Food Magazine 020 7837 2250

First published in December 2008

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