No scientific evidence chlorinated chicken should be banned, says govt chief scientific advisor

There is no scientific reason the UK should ban imports of chicken treated with chorine wash, as is common practice in the USA, the government’s chief scientific advisor has said.

Speaking to Sky News, Sir Ian Boyd said consumers in the UK should have a choice over the type of poultry they buy. 

“From a health perspective there really isn’t a problem with chlorinated chicken,” he told Sky News last week. “The issue is about production processes and animal welfare, and that is a values-based choice that people need to make.”

The comments raise the prospect that the government will pursue a post-Brexit trade deal with the US, including meat that was previously banned in Europe under EU trading rules. The British Poultry Council says chlorinated chicken is a sign producers need to ‘clean up at the end’ and is a reflection of the USA’s higher stocking densities and lower animal welfare standards.

 

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