Confused New Yorkers have been plagued with Salmonella after confusing not ready-to-eat breaded, stuffed chicken products as being fully cooked when they are not.

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, breaded stuffed chicken products such as chicken stuffed with broccoli and cheese generally have a brown exterior and the color of the breading may appear brown, making the chicken look cooked when it is not.

Breaded stuffed chicken products have been linked time and time and time again to Salmonella outbreaks, even though the packaging on the products clearly states that the product is raw and must be cooked to a safe temperature prior to consumption.

According to Consumer Reports, from the years of 1998 to 2022, there were fourteen reported Salmonella outbreaks linked to stuffed chicken products with more than 200 people becoming sick.

200 people becoming sick from Salmonella may not appear to be many considering the population size, but the CDC says that an average of 400 people die each year from Salmonella, so it can cause very serious illness.

Manufacturers of raw breaded, stuffed chicken products are working on ways they can reduce Salmonella illnesses related to these products but in the meantime, consumers are urged to thoroughly read food packaging before consuming any food product and if the label states that the product must be cooked before it can safely be eaten, follow all cooking instructions on the packaging.

Remember that raw chicken must be cooked to an internal temperature of 165° Fahrenheit. The best way to confirm that your chicken has been properly cooked is to insert a food thermometer into the center and thickest part of the product before eating.

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