Handling Food Safely

Many cases of food poisoning occur each year due to improper handling of foods in the home. Once you purchase food, go directly home. If this is not possible, keep a cooler in the car to transport perishable items. Immediately put cold perishables into the refrigerator or freezer.

Hot perishable foods picked up from the deli department need to be kept warm and consumed within two hours. If you purchase hot deli foods to eat at a later time, place the food in small portions in shallow containers and refrigerate or freeze as soon as possible. Perishable foods should be kept at room temperature no longer than two hours.

Bacteria multiply rapidly at temperatures between 40o and 140oF. Unfortunately, the harmful bacteria that cause most cases of food poisoning cannot be seen, smelled or tasted.

Therefore, it’s important to:

  • Keep EVERYTHING clean – hands, utensils, counters, cutting boards and sinks.
  • Always WASH HANDS thoroughly in hot soapy water before preparing foods and after handling raw meat, poultry or seafood.
  • Don’t let RAW JUICES from meat. poultry or seafood touch ready-to-eat foods either in te refrigerator or during preparation.
  • “Closed or Coded Dates” – packing numbers for use by the manufacturer in tracking their products. his enables manufacturers to rotate their stock as well as locate their product in the event of a recall.