The CDC Delivers The Final Verdict: Not to Wash Your Chicken

Step away from the sink with that raw chicken!

While many consumers say they believe giving poultry a quick rinse under the faucet is a precautionary measure that wards off illness, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says it can do more harm. "Don’t wash your raw chicken!," the CDC tweeted April 26. "Washing can spread germs from the chicken to other food or utensils in the kitchen." With that tweet, the government agency included a link to its tips on preventing food poisoning with chicken and estimated that every year about a million people get sick from eating poultry that’s contaminated with harmful germs.

The reason not to wash, the CDC says, is that during washing the "chicken juices can spread in the kitchen and contaminate other foods, utensils, and counter tops."

I grew up in a home with parents who couldn’t cook for shit, so my affinity for food as an adult is tainted by trauma.I remember many nights where my sisters' and I were presented with either finishing our food or getting the belt, and us willingly taking that ass whooping just so we could get some sleep. I remember botched recipes that looked like they came out of a lab. I remember under-cooked meatloaf and actually looking forward to Pizza Day at school. So as an adult, I primarily eat out of necessity than actual enjoyment. And as a result, outside of searing some salmon on the stove, I didn't really cook for shit either.

But like any sensible human being, I use to wash raw chicken. And I expect the same from the rest of Western Civilization. This debate has raged on