A new study at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, seems to have found evidence to suggest that the bacteria that cause urinary tract infections in humans can be contracted from chickens rather than from human contamination during the processing.
The way that we produce our chickens is also thought to be causing the E. coli bacteria to become resistant to drugs, which could have serious implications for public health. As the food industry has become increasingly reliant on antimicrobials during food animal production, the E. coli strain of bacteria has developed a resistance.
This is making it much harder to successfully treat urinary tract infections and other types of infection caused by E. coli bacteria, increasing the risk of complication as well as increasing the cost to the NHS.
The risk of infection can still be reduced, however, if food hygiene rules are complied with. If you run a business that sells, prepares or serves food, then make sure that members of staff have received adequate food safety training, and that food safety measures are being effectively implemented and maintained.