Chicken Liver Dish Linked to Food Poisoning

August 29, 2014

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. host /hoʊst/ (n.) – refers to an animal that carries bacteria or parasite
Example: After realizing that meats are host to many viruses, she decided to be a vegetarian.

2. poultry /ˈpoʊl tri/ (n.) – birds that are kept for their eggs and meat
Example: The farmer disposed some of his poultry stock because of virus contamination.

3. banquet /ˈbæŋ kwɪt/ (n.) – refers to a public dinner or an extravagant feast
Example: They decided to hold a banquet at home instead of in a hotel.

4. fine /faɪn/ (v.) – to pay a certain amount of money for breaking the law
Example: After being fined for food poisoning, the catering service was put out of business.

5. gastrointestinal /ˌgæs troʊ ɪnˈtɛs tə nl/ (adj.) – referring to the stomach and intestines of a human body
Example: She needs a surgery in order for her gastrointestinal tract to heal properly.


Read the text below.
Public health experts in the UK have declared an official alert last June as cases of food poisoning from eating undercooked chicken livers increase.

Public Health England (PHE) has announced that chicken liver is host to the bacteria called campylobacter [kam-pee-lo-BAK-tr], the leading cause of food poisoning in the country. Contamination in the country’s poultry stock has long been an issue. Two in three chickens from supermarkets, and three in four from British farms are likely contaminated. Food poisoning incidents due to campylobacter have also risen, with 6,000 cases reported yearly.

According to government data, there are more large-party incidents than individual cases, suggesting that most of the outbreak is caused by one famous dish, the chicken liver parfait. According to PHE, some of the recent cases occurred in banquets in hotels, where chicken liver parfait is a regular dish. As a consequence, hotels have been heavily fined to answer for guests who suffer from food poisoning. 

The dish is recommended by chefs to be prepared with an undercooked chicken liver as it keeps the meat pink in the middle. However, this method allows the bacteria to remain in raw portions of the meat.

Independent government departments such as the Food Standards Agency (FSA) have made efforts to inspire awareness about the harmful effects of campylobacter. It has arranged campaigns such as the Food Safety Week, in which the risks of the bacteria as well as proper ways of handling raw meat are emphasized.

PHE has shown its support to FSA, and further advises the public that campylobacter causes various gastrointestinal infections other than food poisoning, some of which may lead to paralysis or death.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Do you think the chefs are also to blame for food poisoning incidents? Why or why not?
·         Would you still eat raw food after reading this article? Why or why not?

Discussion B

·         Do you think it is safe to eat raw food? Why or why not?
·         In your opinion, what should people do to avoid food poisoning?

August 29, 2014