Sainsbury's introduces touch-free meat packs

Henrietta Strickland
April 17, 2018

The plastic pouches will be available on three chicken products and will enable customers to tip pre-cut marinated chicken pieces straight into a saucepan, without getting their hands dirty.

Sainsbury's is planning to package chicken so that it can be quickly tipped out into a pan, without needing to touch the raw chicken itself, in response to concerns over the safety of touching raw meat.

Any prospect of having to be in contact with the raw produce left the millennials with high levels of anxiety, the store's survey showed.

According to Hall, one woman revealed in a focus group that she was so scared of catching food poisoning from raw chicken, that she covered it in antibacterial spray before cooking it.

Market research firm Mintel found 37% of people born after 1980 preferred not to handle raw meat.

A lot of the anxiety around raw meat comes from a lack of education and an increasing trend to eat out among the Millenial generation, she added. They're typically used for powders or premixed drinks, but can also be used for meat.

Millenials' squeamishness with raw meat is another blow for the meat and farming industry, which is already reeling from the increase in vegetarian and vegan diets.

Ruth Mason, chief food chain adviser at the National Farmers' Union, told the Sunday Times: "We find it disconcerting that shoppers are so removed from their food that they have these concerns".

The move comes after research by Brand Potential found two thirds of people are "very concerned about hygiene and contamination" when it comes to handling raw meat, particularly chicken.

Sainsbury's reasoning would appear to be supported by strong sales of chickens that can be bought and roasted in a bag - which many people choose because they can avoid handling the dead carcass.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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