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USDA Warns Against Washing The Thanksgiving Turkey

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A turkey gets some exercise on a rooftop
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SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – As many begin Thanksgiving preparations, experts are warning not to wash the festive bird because it may increase the risk of developing a food-borne illness.

A recent study suggests 90 percent of Americans wash their poultry before cooking it; but, the U.S. Department of Agriculture advises against washing raw poultry, including turkey and chicken, according to food researcher Jennifer Quinlan.

“In literature, they call it aerisolization,” Quinlan said. “You’ve got this tiny spray, this microscopic spray, that is splashing back.”

In a demonstration using a black light, Chef Carol Cotner Thompson of The New School of Cooking showed what can happen when a turkey is washed.

For the full story and to find out more about the potential health risks of washing raw meat, visit our CBS Los Angeles sister station.

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