Experts Provide Important Food Safety Tips For the Long Weekend



    CAMBRIDGE, ON, Aug. 29 /CNW Telbec/ - It's the long weekend and a good
time for the Canadian Partnership for Consumer Food Safety Education (the
Partnership) to remind Canadians of safe food handling techniques when
preparing food at home. The Partnership has issued some simple guidelines to
reduce the risk of microbial foodborne illnesses. This is of special interest
to Canadians in light of recent coverage of listeriosis. In the case of deli
meats, check to see if any products have been recalled. Products should be
thrown out or returned for a refund. For a list of the recalled products,
please visit the Canadian Food Inspection Agency's website at
www.inspection.gc.ca, or call Maple Leaf Consumer Foods at 1-800-568-5801 for
verification.
    Your kitchen is a critical part of the food safety chain, and consumers
have an important role in reducing the risk of food borne illnesses. The
Partnership has released four simple guidelines to follow:

    Clean hands and surfaces. Make sure to wash utensils, cutting boards,
hands and surfaces before, during and after food preparation, and when
switching tasks such as handling raw meat, poultry and seafood, and preparing
vegetables.

    Chill and freeze foods promptly. Refrigerate all perishables within two
hours of purchase or preparation, and ensure the fridge is at 4 C or lower. If
the weather is hot, reduce that time to one hour.

    Separate raw meats, seafood and their juices from one another and from
other foods. When shopping, keep raw meats in separate bags, and use separate
dishes and utensils for raw meat. When grilling, use a clean plate to transfer
foods from the grill to the table.

    Cook. Use a food thermometer to ensure that foods are cooked to a proper
temperature. The safe doneness of meat cannot be determined by looking at its
colour or its juices. A digital, instant-read thermometer can determine
exactly when meats and mixed foods are cooked without overcooking.

    Listeria is a common type of bacteria that is pervasive in our
environment. The bacteria are killed instantly once meat is cooked to 74 C
(165 F). For more information about safe food handling, consumers can visit
befoodsafe.ca.




For further information:

For further information: or to schedule interviews about long weekend
food safety, contact Jacque Benson, (403) 266-4710 ext. 227

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CANADIAN PARTNERSHIP FOR CONSUMER FOOD AND SAFETY EDUCATION

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