Recently, a friend of mine got food poisoning soon (during that night) after eating pre-cooked chicken from a local grocery.  She went back to inform them, and was told that this was impossible because it takes something like 36 hours to get food poisoning from eating such food, and it could not have happened that same night.  I knew this was wrong, from personal experience as well as from knowing something about microbiology.   I went straight to the CDC web site to find the following information about incubation periods:

What happens in the body after the microbes that produce illness are swallowed? After they are swallowed, there is a delay, called the incubation period, before the symptoms of illness begin.  This delay may range from hours to days, depending on the organism, and on how many of them were swallowed. …

I sent this quote to my friend and suggested she at least inform the grocery store’s managers about it, but she decided to let it go so as not to cause bad feeling at a business where she shops regularly. I would have provided them a copy of this CDC information, at least.


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