Consumers Support Campylobacter Action

UK - Recent research from the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has shown that consumers want the food industry to continue action to tackle Campylobacter on chickens – the biggest cause of food poisoning in the UK.
calendar icon 6 September 2016
clock icon 3 minute read

The findings show that two thirds (66 per cent) of consumers think the industry should continue to reduce Campylobacter beyond the agreed current target of less than 10 per cent of chickens at the most highly contaminated level. Retailers should also be telling customers what proportion of chickens are at this highest level of contamination, according to 75 per cent of those questioned.

The FSA resumed the Campylobacter survey in August, after it was suspended in April to allow the agency to update testing methods in line with industry processing changes.

Steve Wearne, Director of Policy at the FSA, said: “Publishing surveillance data on Campylobacter has prompted action from retailers and processors and we are now seeing progress.

“Many retailers and processors should be commended for the action they have taken so far. The majority signed up to the pledge to ensure that Campylobacter in chicken ceases to be a significant public health issue, and continued action will be needed to deliver this.”

The FSA’s research shows that 76 per cent of people questioned want retailers to be more proactive in telling them what actions they are taking to reduce the Campylobacter levels on the raw chicken they sell. More than half of people (53 per cent) said that they would start buying chicken from another retailer if their usual shop was found to sell more than the industry average ‘high risk’ chicken.

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