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Safety Source: Food Handling Safety

Food handling safety is a critical aspect of ensuring that the food we consume is safe and healthy for us. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), foodborne illnesses affect one in six Americans each year. These illnesses can be caused by harmful bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens that are commonly found in food. Therefore, it is essential to know the basics of safe food handling, from storing to preparing and serving.

Storing Food Safely

Proper food storage is crucial to preventing contamination and spoilage. To store food safely, make sure that the refrigerator and freezer are at the correct temperatures. The ideal temperature for the refrigerator is 40°F or below, while the ideal temperature for the freezer is 0°F or below. Store raw meat, poultry, and seafood separately from cooked food to prevent cross-contamination.

Preparing Food Safely

When preparing food, always start with clean hands and a clean work area. Wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds before and after handling food. Also, make sure that all utensils, cutting boards, and surfaces are cleaned and sanitized before use. Use separate cutting boards for raw meat, poultry, and seafood, and keep them away from other foods.

Cooking Food Safely

Cooking food to the right temperature is essential to kill harmful bacteria and viruses. Use a food thermometer to ensure that meat, poultry, fish, and other foods are cooked to the appropriate temperature. The FDA recommends the following safe minimum internal temperatures:

  • Beef, pork, lamb, and veal (steaks, roasts, and chops): 145°F
  • Ground meats (beef, pork, lamb, and veal): 160°F
  • Poultry (chicken, turkey, duck, and goose): 165°F
  • Fish: 145°F

Serving Food Safely

When serving food, keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Use chafing dishes, slow cookers, and warming trays to keep hot foods above 140°F. Use ice or cold packs to keep cold foods at or below 40°F. Also, never leave food out at room temperature for more than two hours. If the temperature is above 90°F, do not leave food out for more than one hour.

Sources: CDC | FDA | FoodSafety.gov


Safety Source: Food Handling Safety

Food handling safety is a critical aspect of ensuring that the food we consume is safe and healthy for us. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), foodborne illnesses affect one in six Americans each year. These illnesses can be caused by harmful bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens that are commonly found in food. Therefore, it is essential to know the basics of safe food handling, from storing to preparing and serving.

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