The consuming of chicken has surged in the past few decades because it’s considered a healthier alternative to eating fatty foods or beef on a regular basis. Those tasked with cooking the chicken generally make the effort to wash the raw chicken before it’s cooked because of the presence of bacteria on the unwashed chicken.

While that may eliminate most, if not all, of the bacteria on the chicken, it runs the risk of spraying it around the general area.

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The Agriculture Department funded a research project to explore this process. A Drake University researcher, Jennifer Quinlan, surveyed individuals about their chicken cooking habits, with over 90 percent indicating that they washed their bird.

The problem is that a situation of aerosolization takes place in which the bacteria that comes off the chicken ends up on a kitchen counter or the sink area. That can lead to developing conditions like salmonella or campylobacter, both of which cause diarrhea and other intestinal problems.


In connection with such findings, the Agriculture Department began their campaign to create Food Safe Families, which involves four particular steps. The first is to frequently wash counter surfaces and sinks on a regular basis and also wash your hands just as often.

Next, any raw poultry or the liquids that ooze from them should be kept away from other foods in order to avoid contamination. That poultry should then be cooked at a minimum of 165 degrees and should be refrigerated as quickly as possible.