From Physicians Committee for
Responsible Medicine (PCRM)
Feces top the list of the Physicians Committee’s new Five Worst Contaminants in Chicken Products report. A billboard in Little Rock, Ark., last month warned consumers that chicken from Tyson Foods and other producers is often contaminated.
Contaminant 1. Feces
Shocker: Chickens can soak in “fecal soup” for up to an hour before being packaged for consumers.
Contaminant 2. Toxic Chemicals
Shocker: Peracetic acid and chlorine are both commonly used to treat chicken for contaminants in poultry plants.
Contaminant 3. Superbugs
Shocker: early 75 percent of bacterially tainted chicken products harbor germs resistant to one or more types of antibiotics.
Contaminant 4. Carcinogens
Shocker: Arsenic in chicken could lead to increased risk of lung and bladder cancer deaths.
Contaminant 5. Cholesterol
Shocker: Both 4 ounces of beef and 4 ounces of chicken contain approximately 100 milligrams of cholesterol.
The Physicians Committee billboard, which featured a provocative image of a contaminated chicken carcass, asks “What is Tyson Hiding?” and directs people to www.FecalSoup.org.
A U.S. Department of Agriculture training video obtained by the Physicians Committee through the Freedom of Information Act reveals that the chicken slaughtering process ends with carcasses soaking in cold water—“fecal soup”—for up to one hour before being packaged for consumers.
In 2012, the Physicians Committee tested chicken products sold by 15 grocery store chains in 10 U.S. cities for the presence of fecal bacteria. Approximately half of the chicken samples tested positive.
The four other common contaminants in chicken products include toxic chemicals, superbugs, carcinogens, and cholesterol.
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