Raw chicken tweet by CDC sparks online debate about washing, safety

ByKrisann Chasarik KGO logo
Wednesday, May 1, 2019
Raw chicken tweet by CDC sparks washing, safety debate
The CDC sent a tweet advising people not to wash raw chicken.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Do you wash raw chicken before you cook it? That question has led to an online debate after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sent a tweet advising people not to wash raw chicken. The CDC says it can spread germs from the chicken to other food or utensils.

That created a firestorm of social media responses. Many people were upset, saying there's nothing wrong with washing raw chicken. They maintain that disinfecting the sink and counter top after washing chicken will stop the spread of dangerous bacteria.

The CDC on Monday sent a response to its first tweet, defending its stance. The health institute insists that cooking chicken thoroughly kills germs, not washing it. That didn't seem to calm people who snapped back, defending their belief that washing is the safe choice.

The USDA supports the CDC's advice. Health experts say although you can clean a sink after washing chicken, the issue is water often splatters to other areas of the kitchen, even onto clothes.

If you're not one of the people angry with the CDC over its anti-washing stance, you can find a full list of ways to prevent food poisoning on its website.