Why That Ground Chicken Burger May Not Be As Healthy As You Think

Americans love their chicken. In fact, they love it so much that it’s now the nation’s top choice of meat, with the average American eating about 100 pounds of poultry annually, compared to 54 pounds of beef. Many Americans consider chicken to be a healthier option, but is it really? There’s a downside that many people don’t know about — specifically, a heightened chance of salmonella poisoning. Ground chicken is 12 times more likely than ground beef to be contaminated by salmonella. Recent USDA figures show that more than 20% of ground turkey and nearly 40% of ground chicken sent to grocery stores is contaminated with salmonella, while just 3.3% of ground beef tests positive. That’s because the standards and laws around salmonella have failed to keep up with the increasing danger posed by some strains of the bacteria. Even though 80% of chicken bought in supermarkets is packaged as parts, government inspectors have primarily only been testing whole chickens for salmonella. So, the next time you want a burger, you’d be better off to stick with good old ground beef.