Here’s something that will make British people feel sick.
A new survey of more than 200 chefs in England revealed that a third of them have gone back to work within 48 hours of suffering from sickness, including vomiting and diarrhea. Another third have served meat close to spoiling, 16 percent served potentially undercooked chicken and 7 percent didn’t wash their hands after handling raw fish and meat.
The University of Liverpool study found that many recent large outbreaks of food poisoning were traced back to irresponsible chef behavior, like returning to work too soon after an illness.
“Foodborne illnesses impose a huge burden to the U.K. population, and these results indicate a high prevalence of behaviors which can give people food poisoning,” co-author Dan Rigby told Science Daily.
“Masking the smell and taste of meat on the turn (close to spoiling) is an old industry trick, and the ability to do it means restaurants can cut costs. Showing you can do it shows a potential employer you are experienced in the industry.”
Shockingly, the research also found that it’s difficult for the public to avoid eating in places that might make them sick because award-winning kitchens — restaurants that more than a third of the public assume to be safe because they are expensive — hire the kind of dedicated chefs who would return to their jobs even when they’re still sick.
“Chefs in fine dining establishments were more likely to have returned to work too soon (perhaps for) fear of losing a prestigious job, or a desire not to let the team down,” Rigby said. “(It) is causing people to not stay away for long enough, putting the public at risk.”