Eating raw chicken is a new trend in Japan and a few select restaurants in California.
The dish is called “tori-sashi” which means “bird” and an abbreviation of “sashimi” which is raw fish and meat.
Eating raw chicken can put you at pretty high risk of getting an infection caused by Campylobacter or Salmonella, two types of bacteria that cause food poisoning.
The Centers for Disease Control report about 1.2 million people contract Salmonella each year, and typically about 450 die from the infection.
That is why it is important to take special care when handling and preparing chicken. CDC experts said you should cook the meat until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees to kill all potential bacteria.
The Japanese chefs are working closely with small farms to ensure the chickens are raised to the highest standards. The chicken, or “tori-sashi” is sometimes prepared by boiling or searing the chicken for no more than 10 seconds. That method may only kill off the germs on the surface of the chicken. Health experts said they question the bacteria that remains inside the chicken.
Steve Main, the food and safety program manager at the Spokane Regional Health Office said he was not aware of the trend, but confirmed the CDC guidelines.
He said food establishments will need to adhere to the same chicken cooking guidelines to prevent the public from getting sick from harmful bacteria.
Campylobacter and Salmonella are found on poultry and poultry products and are both very often sources of food born disease . They can be extremely dangerous for anyone who is immune compromised, elderly, very young and pregnant.
So it’s probably not a good idea to eat raw chicken, but if you decide to do so, it is at your own risk.