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FSSAI restrains consumers from eating undercooked Egg and Chicken

Online Legal India LogoBy Online Legal India Published On 22 Jan 2021 Updated On 05 Jan 2023 Category FSSAI

The consumers are already petrified with Bird Flu propelling rapidly among the mass. Hence FSSAI has come up and is further regulated with few guidelines to ensure proper cooking of poultry meat and eggs.

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has also prompted consumers and food businesses operators "not to panic" and cinched proper handling and cooking of poultry meat and eggs for safe consumption as mentioned in the guidance document.

The sudden flare of bird flu or avian influenza has been confirmed only in the poultry birds in six states as mentioned--Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Kerala, Haryana and Chhattisgarh. The main reason behind the outspread of bird flu is the migratory birds coming during the winter months between September to March.

FSSAI, however, issued a statute as titled 'Safe handling, processing and consumption of poultry meat and eggs during bird flu outbreak' where signifying preventives to be taken at retail meat shops, and by consumers and that handling/processing poultry meat.

According to the authority, bird flu is a contagious disease catalyzed by avian influenza. These flu viruses befall naturally among wild birds that carry the viruses in their intestines but usually do not get sick from them. Regardless, bird flu is very pestilent among birds and can make some domesticated birds, including chicken and ducks, very sick and kill them.

Colossally breedings of avian influenza are mainly introduced by the wild birds whose respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts are infected, and not in meat. Nonetheless, highly baneful viruses, such as the H5N1 breedings, propagate to virtually all parts of an infected bird, including meat.

It is found out that avian influenza is highly fatal and can be found on the surface of eggs laid by infected birds, it is seen that the sick birds stop producing eggs, eggs laid in the early phase of the disease could contain viruses in the egg-white and yolk also in the surface of the shell.

FSSAI, on the contrary, suggested that proper cooking inactivates the virus present in the meat and eggs and should not be consumed raw or partially cooked. Although there is no evidence that indicates any individual being infected following the consumption of properly cooked poultry or poultry products, even if these foods were contaminated with avian influenza.

It also said that people should not have direct contact with birds in the contaminated areas, avoid touching dead birds with bare hands and use mask/ gloves at the time of handling raw chicken.

Further, the FSSAI authority advised consumers not to purchase eggs/ poultry meat sourced from bird flu-infected areas and avoid going to open markets that sell poultry in infected areas.

As per the guidelines, all surfaces and utensils that have been in contact with the raw meat should be washed and disinfected before any further use.

Clean, unstained and sanitised knives and cutting boards should be used between cutting/ slaughtering two birds, it said, adding that all the waste generated from the retail poultry shop must be properly disposed of.

While handling and cooking of poultry meat, the FSSAI suggested not to wash the chicken in running water as it may cause water splashing and spread of droplets and also contaminating the surrounding areas.

The FSSAI controller adverted that the World Health Organisation(WHO) has stated it is safe to consume poultry meat and eggs and there is no biological data to suggest the disease can be transmitted to humans through cooked food.

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Anjali Malhotra


Anjali Malhotra


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