There are some food safety aspects to roadkill.
According to Manny Alvarez of Fox News, in 2017, Wisconsin saw nearly 20,000 deer-caused vehicle accidents, according to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. These accidents usually peak in May, June, October and November, when deer mating and birthing seasons occur?
Wisconsin allows people to register their car-killed deer, bear or turkey online or by phone. Once confirmed, the animal can be removed and used as food without even waiting for a police-issued tag.
But Wisconsin isn’t the only state friendly to roadkill cuisine.
According to The Guardian, over 600 moose are killed in Alaska each year, leaving meat on the road that tallies to thousands of pounds. Rather than wasting it, the state gives the roadkill to charities willing to process and use the animals at their own risk.
Other states that allow roadkill pickups are Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Tennessee. According to the NY Daily News, California is also trying to legalize this practice, which may be further spurred on by the cost of disposing of car-killed animals.
One study by the UCDavis Road Ecology Center counted about 6,600 roadkill instances in California during its study period. These accidents led to an estimated $307 million in expenses for the state, and estimates go as high as $600 million when factoring in accidents unreported to police.
By these numbers, the stakes appear high for officials deciding what to do with road-killed animals. Allowing drivers and bystanders to take the roadkill home seems an easy solution. In fact, the practice has many supporters high up in the ranks.
The PETA website states, “If people must eat animal carcasses, roadkill is a superior option to the neatly shrink-wrapped plastic packages of meat in the supermarket.
“Eating roadkill is healthier for the consumer than meat laden with antibiotics, hormones, and growth stimulants, as most meat is today.”
But there are those nasty bacteria to consider, so roadkill, like any raw product, should be handled with care.