Daily Brief: 2016.12.23
Holiday Food Safety
As Hoosiers gather around the table with family and friends to share a meal and celebrate the holidays, the MESH Coalition reminds you to practice food safety to ensure a safe and healthy holiday season for everyone.
Foodborne illness is a common, costly public health problem. Many different disease-causing microbes, or pathogens, can contaminate foods, so there are many different foodborne infections. In addition, poisonous chemicals, or other harmful substances can cause foodborne diseases if they are present in food.
(Sources: CDC, FDA)
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) each year roughly 1 in 6 Americans (48 million people) get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die of foodborne diseases. These estimates are based on two major groups of foodborne illnesses; known foodborne pathogens and unspecified agents.
- If you're transporting a meal from one location to another, temperature is important. When transporting hot dishes, wrap them well and pack in an insulated container.
- When serving your meal, keep foods out of the "danger zone" by keeping hot foods hot and cold foods cold. If you are serving hot foods on a buffet, keep the foods hot with chafing dishes, slow cookers or warming trays. Make sure they are heated to at least 165 °F.
- Discard all perishable foods, such as meat, poultry, and casseroles left at room temperature longer than 2 hours. Immediately refrigerate or freeze remaining leftovers in shallow containers.
(Source: Food Safety, FDA)