Sainsbury's introduces touch-free meat packs

Many younger people are not used to preparing food at home

Many younger people are not used to preparing food at home Getty Images

Next month Sainsbury's will introduce packaging that allows consumers to put chicken pieces directly into a frying pan without having to touch them.

She said that in one focus group, a woman said she had "sprayed her chicken with Dettol first before cooking it" because she was so anxious about contamination from bacteria in the uncooked meat.

Katherine Hall, product development manager for meat, fish and poultry at Sainsbury's, said: "Customers, particularly younger ones, are quite scared of touching raw meat".

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Sainsbury's has announced it is launching "no touch" chicken products in May, so people who hate handling raw meat can avert the process entirely. The FSA states that cooking will kill any bacteria present, including food poisoning bug campylobacter, whereas washing chicken can spread germs by splashing.

'These bags allow people, especially those who are time-poor, to just "rip and tip" the meat straight into the frying pan without touching it'.

Ruth Mason of the National Farmers' Union told The Telegraph that it's "disconcerting that shoppers are so removed from their food" and while the meat industry faces pressure from the increased number of consumers adopting vegetarian or vegan diets, there have been increasingly strong sales of chickens that can be bought and roasted in a bag.

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A recent report from market research firm Mintel found 37% of millennials - those born after 1980 - said they preferred not to handle raw meat when cooking, compared with 27% of the wider population.

The chicken-in-a-pouch range - that includes pre-sliced marinated meat - will go on sale on May 3.

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