Well done to Progressive Pulse here

It only goes to prove even more that anyone who voluntarily chooses to buy chicken from a supermarket when they can afford something more expensive is foolhardy at best. Chicken is the UK’s most widely consumed meat yet antibiotic use among intensively reared chicken flocks is scandalously widespread and is more than likely to constitute a health danger to those who eat it and then subsequently rely on antibiotics in illness.

Quite why antibiotic use is permitted in animal husbandry I have never understood. Probably just because we can.

Of course the news that the Food Standards Agency is going to rely on the big supermarkets to police themselves was rather earlier in the year – so that’s something else that is clearly working well. In fact even better, included in this ‘experiment’ are Mitchell and Butlers, owners of Toby Inns, whose establishment in Exeter had to be closed not once, but on two occasions because swathes of its customers were taken ill with norovirus.

Norovirus is normlaly a human to human transmission, not from infected poultry…..

27 comments on “Well done to Progressive Pulse here

  1. Norovirus is also know as the cruise disease. Highly transmittable- one reason to steer well clear of the buffet.

  2. “It only goes to prove even more that anyone who voluntarily chooses to buy chicken from a supermarket when they can afford something more expensive is foolhardy at best. ”

    And my dinner choice is none of your fucking business, matey.

    I fed a family of four from a perfectly good chicken yesterday, with leftovers for sandwiches today. For four quid.

    That was an excellent decision on my part, as I can cook, so none of us have had the shits today, and a lovely time was had by all.

  3. Would have thought that the incidence of Norovirus, -presumably being a virus, going on the name- is going to have SFA to do with the use of antibiotics use in poultry rearing. Antibiotics being efficacious against bacteria, not viruses.

  4. ‘Quite why antibiotic use is permitted in animal husbandry I have never understood’
    Love this type of argument – I don’t understand something so it must instinctively be wrong. ‘Course that never stops the wankers pontificating cf Taxresearch uk every damn day.

  5. “It only goes to prove even more that anyone who voluntarily chooses to buy chicken from a supermarket when they can afford something more expensive is foolhardy at best”

    This is true (note the qualifier “when they can afford…”, but only because 99% of supermarket chicken is more than twice as shit as what you can get for twice the price.

  6. Love this type of argument – I don’t understand something so it must instinctively be wrong.

    Which is bad news for the UK as Murphy understands next to nothing.

  7. ” rely on the big supermarkets to police themselves”

    Author has clearly never been a supplier to the big supermarkets then. They can – and do – run snap inspections and they will delist you if you’re not up to scratch.

  8. ” rely on the big supermarkets to police themselves”

    The supermarkets have skin in the game. If a bunch of people come down with the lurgy after scoffing their chicken, it’s the supermarket will be held up for blame. No-one will be interested in their suppliers.
    Contrast the public sector – who do police themselves. The Grenfell disaster’s a fine example. The responsibility for the choice of & installation of the cladding on the block was wholly in the public sector. Who are now desperately casting about for anyone to blame but themselves.

  9. If you can afford better, you should never, ever, buy chicken (or meat of any description) from a supermarket, even if you intend to cook it in a pan of gloop.

  10. Bloody Toby Inns.

    They need to be taken over by the State. At least the State will ensure they are kept scrupulously clean with no chance of viral infection.

    I’m sure the State would use the same model as used for hospitals in the NHS…

    Oh, wait…

  11. “If you can afford better, you should never, ever, buy chicken (or meat of any description) from a supermarket”

    I always find the middle-class delusion that the world is a fair & honest place, amusing.
    Anyone who’s been involved in small-shop retailing will know the people come trough the door are the despised cunts who support one’s slender profit margin. There to be exploited not befriended. (Although one does has to tolerate them hanging around waffling when one could be catching a quick fag out the back). More the enemy who are fickle creatures to be lured away in an instant by 10p off a can of sardines.
    The sitcom “Open All Hours” captures the spirit.
    One has to look at incentives.
    Supermarket workers are incentivised by a set of rules promulgated from on high. Stick to them & you keep your job. The small butcher is incentivised by offloading that tray of mouldering sausages, as long as they’re not actually moving, by the thought of chucking good dosh in the bin.
    Plus supermarket supply lines are much shorter, quality control exists & the good name of the chain a valuable commodity.

  12. @Bis,

    Yeah- I understand that Butchers’ have a rep for being bloody fab, but for supermarkets, there’s millions to be had if they do what they do well.

    For a small butchers, at best there’s a hundred K.

    Why wouldn’t the incentives work in favour of supermarkets?

  13. @bis, it depends. Sure the flat-rate “butchers good, supermarkets bad” trope is bollocks. Germany has a particular problem with grocery quality because consumers here buy on price only. So even little butcher sells insipid mass produced pork and tumbled Dutch chicken bits. It’s changing slowly, and to get decent staple meats you have to go to several places.

    Supermarket chicken is good enough for the cats.

  14. Incidentally the best local pork (outdoor old-breed) has the shortest supply line. Farmer slaughters himself for sale on the weekend market. The quality is surpassed only go iberico, which is less pork than the flavour equivalent of an orgasm.

  15. @ bis
    The small butcher in a prosperous area who concentrates on providing better quality at a higher price than the supermarket will always prosper provided that he doesn’t get too greedy. Mine eats (some of) the stuff that he doesn’t sell and AFAIK he’s never been off sick in more than twenty years since he started his shop. It may be different in Spain or Tower Hamlets of course but everywhere that I have resided the good butcher was a viable enterprise and his reputation was a vital component of his enterprise value.
    I was once asked by a middle-aged lady why my chickens tasted better than the ones she bought from M&S … because I bought free-range chickens from a chicken specialist butcher (fortunately within walking distance of my flat).

  16. ‘Tray of mouldering sausages…’ I think the correct term is ‘added value’.

    Decent food can cost, but then so does satellite television and smart phones – it’s partly a priorities based thing. I’ve three good friends who are butchers (inherited family shop in the right {London} neighbourhood). They drive, respectively, a Jag, a Lexus and a Porsche. Here in the sticks we’re fortunate in that the lad next door regularly slaughters a bullock/calf/sheep that’s been grazing on Dartmoor. We’ve also two quality butchers and several half-decent ones. There’s a specialist veal producer at the local market, two rare-breed pork producers, two that specialise in game and one in horse (pony) meat. Of course you can always go to Morrisons or Tesco and buy crap for a fraction of the price.

  17. Murphy is right but for completely the wrong reason .

    It makes little difference whether you eat antibiotic treated meat or not .

    The key issue is that billions of animals worldwide are given antibiotics for prophylactic reasons .

    This avoidably creates many more hosts for bacteria to mutate within and develop antibiotic resistance .

  18. @john77
    Sure. No doubt one can be regaled with tales of this or that marvellous butcher, baker or candlestick maker. No doubt they do exist, although finding them’s another matter. Point being,not everyone lives within walking distance of whatever part of the Septic Isle you do. If you’re shopping blind you’re infinitely better off buying stuff from one of the supermarket majors. They’ve even been known to sell free-range chicken. (Although whether you’d know a free-range chicken if it beaked you’s another matter. Take that from someone who’s free-range chickens squarked their last squark by the kitchen door. Free-range can be very widely interpreted. It’s mostly the label improves the taste)

  19. The key issue is that billions of animals worldwide are given antibiotics for prophylactic reasons .

    Is this to get them out of the surgery and stop bothering the GP?

  20. @ bis
    Rick has a small poster (periodically updated) in his shop detailing where the cattle, sheep, pigs, chickens, geese, turkeys come from. We can go and look at the farms. [There isn’t space for labelling sources for minor products: ducks, rabbits, venison, guinea fowl, hares].
    I admit that I couldn’t tell a free-range chicken from a barn-laid one by looking at them and forty years ago I just trusted the chicken shop but I could tell that they tasted better which is why I went back and shopped there again.

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