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Katharine Mieszkowski – 10 things to know before you eat your next chicken dinner

This looks like a humble black work boot with a filthy white sock over it. But it actually is a secret weapon in the fight against salmonella, a microscopic bacteria that can make people sick.

Danish farmers wear socks over their work boots when they’re in chicken houses to gather samples of the manure, which is tested for salmonella. Credit: Courtesy of Birgitte Helwigh

It’s one of many things farmers in Denmark have started doing since surging human illnesses prompted the country to no longer tolerate the bacteria in its chicken. It’s pretty simple: Danish farmers wear the socks over their boots when they’re in chicken houses to gather samples of the bacteria in the chickens’ poop.

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