Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Food Safety and Handling on Memorial Day

Giving importance to food safety and handling on Memorial Day is not something a lot of people think about. But as most of you may know, Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer and is usually a festive time for barbeques, cook-offs and camping. A lot can happen outdoors and it’s not far from possible for perishables like meat and veggies to be mishandled or to go bad.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that five incidences caused by food-borne illnesses last year have been traced to fruits and vegetables like bean sprouts and cantaloupes. While these illnesses are not necessarily fatal, their symptoms can cause death, particularly to the immune-comprised.

If you’re going out for a picnic or holding a family feast in the great outdoors, here are a few hints from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics on how to keep food fresh and safe to eat by the time you reach your destination:

1. Fruits and vegetables with a hard rind should be washed no matter what. Pathogens present in the rind can be transferred to the flesh of the fruit as you cut it.

2. Wash pre-packed veggies. Transporting the veggies at wrong temperatures can speed up microbial growth. 

3. Dry washed fruits and veggies with a paper towel. Don’t reuse the towel to avoid contamination and discard it after use.

4. Trim off the bruised portions of fruits. Spoilage may be setting in and these parts could be teeming with bacteria.

5. Make use of separate cutting boards for cutting fruits, veggies and raw meats. Otherwise, make sure to wash the cutting board every time you cut different types of fruits, veggies and meat to prevent contamination.

6. Steam raw sprouts or give them a few wash before eating. These actions can lower the amount of bacteria present on their surface.

Memorial Day is a time to commemorate our faithful departed—those who’ve risked their lives on duty so we could enjoy our own and the many more summers to come. The best thing we can do to show our appreciation of this life is to protect it in one of the simplest ways possible: properly handling our food.

Image Credit:
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...