Food Standards Agency
Major retailers publish campylobacter results for January-March 2019
The top 9 food retailers publish January – March 2019 campylobacter results for fresh shop-bought UK-produced chickens.
The top nine retailers across the UK yesterday published their latest testing results on campylobacter contamination in UK-produced fresh whole chickens (covering samples tested from January to March 2019).
The latest figures show that on average, across the major retailers, 3.5% of chickens tested positive for the highest level of contamination. These are the chickens carrying more than 1,000 colony forming units per gram (cfu/g) of campylobacter.
Rebecca Sudworth, Director of Policy at the Food Standards Agency, yesterday said:
‘Campylobacter levels have remained steady and are below our target of 7% at the highest level of contamination. Nevertheless, we will continue to work closely with retailers to bring levels down to as low as reasonably achievable.
Our advice to consumers remains the same: take care when handling raw chicken, do not wash it, and ensure it is cooked thoroughly before serving.'
|April-June 2018||July-September 2018||October-December 2018||January-March 2019|
|cfu/g less than 10||60.6%||58.8%||63.1%||55.4%|
|cfu/g over 1000||3.7%||3.5%||3.1%||3.5%|
Results by retailer for January – March 2019
- Aldi results
- Asda results
- Co-op results
- Lidl results
- Marks and Spencer results
- Morrisons results
- Sainsbury's results
- Tesco results
- Waitrose results
The sampling and analyses are carried out in accordance with protocols laid down by the FSA and agreed by Industry.
We have been testing chickens for campylobacter since February 2014 and publishing the results as part of a campaign to bring together the whole food chain to tackle the problem. Campylobacter is the most common cause of food poisoning in the UK.
In September 2017 we announced changes to the survey, with major retailers carrying out their own sampling and publishing their results under robust protocols laid down by the FSA. We are continuing to sample fresh whole chickens sold at retail, however, the focus is now on the smaller retailers and the independent market.
Chicken is safe if consumers follow good kitchen practice:
- Cover and chill raw chicken - cover raw chicken and store at the bottom of the fridge so juices cannot drip onto other foods and contaminate them with food poisoning bacteria such as campylobacter
- Don’t wash raw chicken - thorough cooking will kill any bacteria present, including campylobacter, while washing chicken can spread germs by splashing
- Wash used utensils - thoroughly wash and clean all utensils, chopping boards and surfaces used to prepare raw chicken.
- Wash hands thoroughly with soap and warm water, after handling raw chicken - this helps stop the spread of campylobacter by avoiding cross-contamination
- Cook chicken thoroughly - make sure chicken is steaming hot all the way through before serving. Cut into the thickest part of the meat and check that it is steaming hot with no pink meat and that the juices run clear.
Latest News from
Food Standards Agency
FSA appoints new Chief Executive15/07/2019 14:33:00
Emily Miles will be the new CEO at the Food Standards Agency.
Open Meeting of Welsh Food Advisory Committee08/07/2019 17:10:00
The Welsh Food Advisory Committee of the Food Standards Agency is holding its next open meeting in Cardiff on Wednesday 10 July 2019.
Tipton meat cutting plant ordered to pay over £18,000 for hygiene breaches08/07/2019 10:15:00
Noor Halal Foods Ltd pleaded guilty to ID mark failings and a hygiene offence at the site.
Update on investigation into food supply chain linked to listeria27/06/2019 10:25:00
Investigation continuing into foods linked to listeria infections in hospitals.
FSA welcomes new allergen labelling law26/06/2019 10:25:00
The Food Standards Agency Chair Heather Hancock has welcomed the announcement of a new allergen labelling law to help further protect the UK’s two million people living with food allergy, made yesterday by Environment Secretary Michael Gove.
Gove to introduce 'Natasha's Law'25/06/2019 15:14:00
A new law will require food businesses to include full ingredients labelling on pre-packaged foods, Environment Secretary Michael Gove announced today.
Summary of discussions at the FSA Board meeting on 19 June 201920/06/2019 13:47:00
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) Board discussed an update on the Government’s Allergen labelling review, a model for food standards official controls, the Science Council’s recommendations on horizon scanning, the FSA’s sampling strategy and the FSA’s approach to regulatory enforcement at its quarterly meeting.
Update on listeria cases being investigated17/06/2019 10:20:00
Investigation continues into foods linked to listeria infections in hospitals.