Objectives: Escherichia coli producing CTX-M-15 enzyme began to rapidly spread in the UK from around 2003 but other types also occur, notably CTX-M-14. We examined breasts from UK-reared (n = 62) and imported (n = 27) chickens as potential sources of quinolone-resistant E. coli with blaCTX-M genes. A further 40 samples for which the country of rearing could not be identified were examined. Methods: During 2006,129 fresh and frozen chicken breast fillets were purchased from retail outlets in the West Midlands. These were cultured for E. coli on CLED agar containing 8 mg/L ciprofloxacin and carrying a 10 μg cefpodoxime disc. Resistant isolates were identified and typed by RAPD fingerprinting; bla CTX-M was identified by PCR and genotyped by reverse-line hybridization. Results: The country of rearing was identified from the packaging for 89 of 129 purchased samples. Only one of the 62 UK-reared chicken samples carried E. coli producing a CTX-M-1 enzyme, whereas 10 of 27 samples reared overseas had E. coli with CTX-M enzymes. Specifically, 4/10 Brazilian, 3/4 Brazilian/Polish/French, and 2/2 Dutch samples had E. coli with CTX-M-2 enzymes. Six of 40 samples for which the country of rearing was not known had producers of CTX-M enzymes, 5 of them with CTX-M-14. Conclusions: Quinolone-resistant E. coli with various CTX-M β-lactamase genes that are common in human infections worldwide were found in imported chicken breasts, indicating a possible source for gut colonization. Samples from Brazil were commonly positive for E. coli with CTX-M-2, the dominant bla CTX-M genotype from human infections in South America, which is currently rare in clinical infections in the UK. CTX-M-15, the dominant CTX-M type in human infections in the UK, was not found in chicken isolates, suggesting that the UK-reared chickens are not a reservoir of CTX-M-15.