A suggestion that people get sick from salmonella linked to raw chicken “is not very well supported by data,” according to the National Chicken Council.

In commenting on new performance standards for chicken processing plants by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety & Inspection Service, the group noted that while human disease from salmonella has been going up in recent years, the presence of salmonella on raw chickens has been going down.

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The new rules governing standards for salmonella and campylobacter on raw chicken are generally consistent with industry performance in recent years, the group said, adding that the industry will continue to work to improve the microbiological profile of raw chicken.