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 Post subject: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 4:04 pm 
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Some have been critical of the US for its food regulatory practices.

I think there was someone (who shall remain nameless) that was critical of some food processing companies doing chlorine washes of chicken and for the government for allowing that to happen.

Then I saw this:

https://fullfact.org/europe/does-eu-say ... -chlorine/

Quote:
Does the EU say it's safe to eat chicken rinsed in chlorine?

In brief

Claim
The EU says chlorine-washed chicken is safe.
Conclusion
The European Food Safety Authority has said that there are “no safety concerns” with the chlorination of chicken, but it has also said this practice might not be sufficient for maintaining good hygiene standards throughout the slaughter process.
"There's no food safety issue with chlorine-washed goods because the EU themselves say that's perfectly safe,"

Liam Fox, 26 July 2017

Research from the European Food Safety Authority—an EU agency—has found “no safety concerns” with treating slaughtered chicken with chlorine. That said, it and other bodies have also said this practice might not be sufficient for maintaining good hygiene standards throughout the slaughter process.

The EU continues to ban imports of chlorine-washed chicken from the US. After Brexit, there’s a debate over whether the UK should relax this on poultry imports from the US.

Chlorine and chicken: why the sudden fuss?

The International Trade Secretary, Liam Fox, is in the US for talks about possible future trading relationships between the US and the UK in the wake of Brexit.

The poultry trade is one of the issues that the US and UK will need to resolve in a future deal. It’s controversial because, at the moment, the EU bans the import of poultry which has been rinsed with chlorine—something that’s very common in the US but doesn’t happen here.

That means the UK, as an EU member, currently imports a paltry amount from the US. After Brexit, we may be able to drop this restriction if we wanted to, and some experts believe it’s likely to be a high priority for the US in negotiations. The Cabinet is reportedly spilt on the issue.

What’s the debate?

It’s standard practice in the US to rinse chicken carcasses with chlorine and other products to disinfect them after they’ve been slaughtered. This is what’s called ‘pathogen reduction treatment’.

Supporters of this argue it’s a healthy way of ensuring meat is free of harmful bacteria.

Bar some exceptions, the EU bans the use of anything other than water to wash these products, so this restricts heavily imports of US chicken to the UK and other EU countries.

The EU takes a different approach which it calls the ‘farm to fork’ principle. It says that’s based on ensuring hygiene across all stages of the production chain, rather than particular disinfection at the end of the process.

There’s now a debate over whether the UK—outside of the EU—should drop this ban, but the EU’s position seems steadfast. The EU’s Agriculture Commissioner, Phil Hogan, said in March that:

“We would never accept a lowering of our standards in the EU, and we have been consistently effective in protecting standards in all our global trade agreements.”

We’re not covering in this piece what actually constitutes a higher or lower standard of hygiene.

Does the EU say it’s safe to eat chlorinated chicken?

We spoke to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)—an EU agency—and the British Poultry Council (BPC). Neither said it was unsafe to eat chicken rinsed with chlorine, but both raised different concerns about the process.

The BPC said it was concerned about the impact on British farmers and standards if chlorine-washed chicken from the US started to be imported.

The EFSA says it stands by its findings from 2005 research that concluded:

“On the basis of available data and taking into account that processing of poultry carcasses (washing, cooking) would take place before consumption, the Panel considers that treatment with trisodium phosphate, acidified sodium chlorite, chlorine dioxide, or peroxyacid solutions, under the described conditions of use, would be of no safety concern.”

Similarly, a panel in 2012 said the use of chemical substances in poultry is “unlikely to pose an immediate or acute health risk for consumers”.

The EFSA has also stressed that “the use of antimicrobial solutions does not replace the need for good hygienic practices during processing of poultry carcasses, particularly during handling…”. It also cautioned that it hadn’t looked at data on the by-products of chlorine use, aside from the chickens themselves.

This is part of the reasoning behind the EU’s ban. Back in the late 1990s, when the ban was introduced, scientific advisors to the EU expressed concern that:

"the use of decontamination techniques during food processing would have an adverse effect on the efforts being made both at the primary production level and during the initial processing stages. In particular … removing incentives for farmers to continue developing good sanitation in their flocks, and in neglecting the use of good manufacturing practice (GMP) in the whole production line".

This was backed up by another panel from a few years ago, which said that maintaining standards earlier in the slaughter process was likely to be better for public health “as the bacteria may also spread from farms to humans by other pathways”.



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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 4:06 pm 
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I also saw this:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/ ... -countries


Quote:
Egg contamination scandal widens as 15 EU states, Switzerland and Hong Kong affected
Brussels spokeswoman says situation is evolving as two men remain arrested following raids in Belgium and the Netherlands


Europe’s latest food scandal has widened after the European commission announced that a total of 15 EU states, plus Switzerland and Hong Kong, are now known to have received egg products contaminated by an insecticide harmful to human health.

A spokeswoman in Brussels said the situation was “evolving by the day”, as criminal investigators continued to hold two men arrested on Thursday for fraud following a series of raids in Belgium and the Netherlands.

The EU countries known to be affected by the scandal are Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Sweden, Britain, Austria, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Denmark. Products in British supermarkets were removed on Thursday after it was discovered that the initial Food Standards Agency claim that 21,000 contaminated eggs had hit the UK was a major underestimate. The FSA now says the figure is more like 700,000.

Following the arrests of the two directors of a Dutch firm, Chickfriend, which is believed to have supplied the banned anti-lice agent to farmers, a third man, whose home was raided by investigators, spoke to Dutch media on Friday to insist upon his innocence.

Nick Hermens, 28, said he had cut links in February 2016 with the owners of the company implicated in the scandal, due to his concerns about the legality of their business, although his claims could not be verified.


Continued at above link.

One item in particular caught my attention:

Quote:
It emerged this week, courtesy of an angry and defensive Belgian agriculture minister, that as far back as November the Dutch authorities received a tipoff that fipronil was being used illegally in farms in the Netherlands. The information wasn’t passed on to other countries despite the highly interlinked agricultural sectors. The Netherlands says the oversight was because they had launched a fraud investigation and hadn’t considered the health risks.

The Belgians, meanwhile, knew on 2 June this year, entirely by good fortune, that there had been contamination but did not notify the European commission’s Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) – designed to allow food safety agencies to coordinate – until 24 July.

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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:50 pm 
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EU regulations allow vegetables like lettuce to be washed in chlorine. What this means in practice is actually that veggie leaves are kept in a vat of chlorinated water, sometimes for quite a long time. The argument about whether it's shocking or not - it's bullshit. I've been asking Euroluvvies making hay about this if they enjoy their chlorinated lettuce. Or for that matter their chlorinated tap water. Propaganda.

... That said. Different nations will have different standards. Irn Bru in the UK is made with a different formula than Irn Bru in the US, because the FDA has made some of the chemicals in the true Scottish Bru illegal. ... and amusingly, the converse is true too I think, the American formula Irn Bru would be illegal to sell in the UK. The same is true of energy drinks like Red Bull, I think the FDA has a dimmer view of taurine than the EU does.

TBH, aside from the rank hypocrisy of the ideologues on both sides - this is fair enough IMO. Different nations will have different standards, that's this democracy and sovereignty thing again, and there's a lot of food regs these days. The US is certainly no saint on the subject - in fact if anything it's worse, look up the utterly transparent attempts by competitors to ban Quorn from US markets for example. I don't really see a huge problem - if Ford can make cars with steering wheels on the right side for the British market, than American agri companies can make chicken that isn't chlorine washed for the British market as well.

I don't think that's incompatible with free trade at all. The chlorine wash thing is a complete non-issue for all manner of reasons.

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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 8:47 pm 
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What is the problem with chlorine!? Its a wonderful element! (properly diluted).

Last time I checked chlorination is the predominant method for water purification in U.S. water treatment systems, and I'm guessing that ~100 years of evidence about drinking chlorinated water have revealed so negligible of increased risk for anything that any "links" are likely completely spurious. Am I wrong here?

With this in mind, I'm guessing that when this article claims "Chlorinated" chickens what it really means is "Chickens washed in chlorinated water?" Even if the chlorine concentrations are 4 or 5 ppm, they are still within the recommended maximum concentrations for drinking water and swimming pools globally often had levels in that ballpark I think.

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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 8:52 pm 
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Anthropoid wrote:
What is the problem with chlorine!? Its a wonderful element! (properly diluted).

Last time I checked chlorination is the predominant method for water purification in U.S. water treatment systems, and I'm guessing that ~100 years of evidence about drinking chlorinated water have revealed so negligible of increased risk for anything that any "links" are likely completely spurious. Am I wrong here?

With this in mind, I'm guessing that when this article claims "Chlorinated" chickens what it really means is "Chickens washed in chlorinated water?" Even if the chlorine concentrations are 4 or 5 ppm, they are still within the recommended maximum concentrations for drinking water and swimming pools globally often had levels in that ballpark I think.


Yup.

Of course if it was as bad as the hysteria makes out Americans would be dropping like flies after a trip to KFC.

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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 12:49 pm 
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EUBanana wrote:
[
Yup.

Of course if it was as bad as the hysteria makes out Americans would be dropping like flies after a trip to KFC.



The 450F partially hydrogenated vegetable oil/coconut oil mixture deactivates the chlorine. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 8:16 pm 
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KFC used to be fried in lard back in the day. You young punks don't know what you're missing.

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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 9:51 pm 
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My Stepmother who was from Liverpool introduced me to bread and dripping (or mucky fat butties as they are known in Yorkshire) when I was a kid. That shit was surprisingly good, especially when the bread was toasted over an open fire...

http://cookit.e2bn.org/historycookbook/ ... pping.html

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 Post subject: Re: Chicken rinsed in chlorine (and EU food standards)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:05 pm 
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Mac wrote:
My Stepmother who was from Liverpool introduced me to bread and dripping (or mucky fat butties as they are known in Yorkshire) when I was a kid. That shit was surprisingly good, especially when the bread was toasted over an open fire...

http://cookit.e2bn.org/historycookbook/ ... pping.html



That reminds me of something from my childhood (it may or may not be the same thing).

My parents would make home made sausage (buy the pork and the casings(intestines) from a wholesale butcher, then make the sausage ourselves).
Mom would fry up the sausage in a big old cast iron frying pan. Of course you would be left with the fat/grease in the bottom of the frying pan. Mom would let it cool a little, and then pour the fat/grease into a small crock or bowl and store it in the fridge. The next day (or anytime thereafter) you could pull the crock of now congealed fat/drippings out of thefridge. You would toast up a thick piece of rye bread (of course not pre-sliced---you would slice it to your preference off the loaf of rye bread) and then smear the fat drippings onto the bread. You would top it off with some sliced red onions or some chopped up garlic cloves.

This picture would be similar to what I am describing:
Image



Damn, that used to taste good.

That was something that mom and dad brought over from the old country (Transylvania/Romania). Food was often scarce when they were growing up there, particularly in the years after WW2, so nothing would ever go to waste.

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