September 25, 2022

Please Don’t Cook Your Chicken In NyQuil!

Another potentially dangerous and definitely irresponsible TikTok video has gone viral. This one gives details on how to cook chicken in NyQuil, an over-the-counter cold medicine. The FDA has condemned this practice, and not just because it's disgusting. This practice can be dangerous. The FDA says that any social media challenges involving medicines are dangerous because they do not use these products in the manner for which they are intended. Many of these TikTok "challenges" show people misusing nonprescription, or over the counter, medications and then encouraging viewers to do the same. The challenge encouraging people to cook chicken in NyQuil, which contains the drugs acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, and doxylamine, is unsafe because cooking that product will make all of … [Read more...]

Learn How Cross-Contamination Can Make You Sick

September is Food Safety Education Month. And it's a good time to learn about how to stay safe in the kitchen. First up, learn how cross-contamination can make you sick and how to avoid it with tips from Cross-contamination occurs when raw foods such as meats, poultry, seafood, and shell eggs, or juices or drips from those products, come into contact with foods that are eaten uncooked, with kitchen surfaces, with your hands, and with utensils and plates. Other surfaces that can be contaminated include cutting boards, cupboard door handles and pulls, the kitchen faucet, and the kitchen sink. Bacteria that can cross-contaminate foods include E. coli O157:H7, Salmonella, Campylobacter, Clostridium perfringens, and Listeria monocytogenes. And they can all make you … [Read more...]

It’s Back to School Time! USDA Has Safe Lunch Box Tips

It's back to school time! Many schools are starting in the next couple of weeks. And the USDA has safe lunch box tips to keep your child's lunch healthy and free from pathogens. More than 50,000,000 kids attend schools in the United States. A large percentage of them bring lunches from home. These lunches can be healthy, but if they are made with perishable items such as cooked meats, chicken, cheese, or egg, they must be kept at a safe temperature to prevent illness. For a safe lunch box and bag, start with an insulated lunch bag or box. Brown paper bags are not appropriate for any foods other than whole apples and cookies. The bag should be packed with a frozen gel pack or a frozen juice or drink box or water bottle to make sure that the food is kept out of the danger zone of … [Read more...]

FDA Releases Pesticide Monitoring Report For Fiscal Year 2020

The FDA has released its pesticide monitoring report for fiscal year 2020 with the news that 96.8% of domestically produced food, and 88.4% of imported food met federal tolerances set by the EPA. From October 1, 2019 to September 30, 2020, the FDA tested for about 75o different pesticides and selected industrial compounds on 2,078 human food samples (316 domestic and 1,762 imported) in the program. The domestic food samples were collected from 35 states and imported human food samples were collected from 79 countries. The maximum residue levels are set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to protect public health. These tolerances are established on the amount of residue that a food can contain. The domestically produced food group  with the highest percentage of violative … [Read more...]

Summer Grilling Safety Tips From Consumer Product Safety Commission

Summer grilling safety tips from the Consumer Product Safety Commission will help prevent accidents and burns during this season. Gas and charcoal grills can present many risks, including burns, fire, and carbon monoxide poisoning. From 2016 through 2018, there were about 12 deaths per year involving these products. And last year, there were about 6,300 gas and charcoal grill-related injuries treated in emergency rooms. Before you light up the grill, check to see if your grill has been recalled. If it has, do not use it until it's been repaired or replaced. Then, check the grill to make sure there aren't any cracks or leaks. Hoses should be checked for brittleness, holes, cracks, and leaks. Never use grills indoors. In fact, don't even use your grill in your garage or a covered … [Read more...]

What Do You Know About Hot Dogs and Food Safety?

It's summer grilling time! With the Fourth of July holiday coming up, many people are going to be cooking burgers and sausages on the grill, including hot dogs. So what do you know about hot dogs and food safety? The USDA has some tips. Hot dogs, also known as frankfurters, are cooked or smoked sausages. According to federal regulations they must be made of comminuted semisolid products (reduced to minute particles) that are made of one or more kinds of animal muscle, including beef, pork, or poultry. Hot dogs may have a skin, or casing, or be skinless. The finished hot dog may not contain more than 30% fat or more than 10% water. Up to 3.5% non-meat binders and extenders can be added; those include cereal or nonfat or full fat dried milk or soy protein. While hot dogs are … [Read more...]

Fourth of July Food Safety Tips From the USDA

The USDA is offering food safety tips for the Fourth of July holiday. We all know the basic drill: cook properly, clean everything, sanitize often, and avoid cross-contamination, but it's a good idea to review these rules before you have lots of guests to feed. First of all, hot Fourth of July summer weather will play a part in food safety. As the temperatures rise, the risk for foodborne illness goes up. Not only do bacteria multiply more quickly in warm weather, but when the ambient air temperature is above 90°F, you must get prepared and cooked food into refrigeration after just one hour, not the usual two hours. To start, always wash your hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds before and after cooking, and especially after handling raw meats, poultry, eggs, and … [Read more...]

Wash Your Hands and Use a Food Thermometer This Summer

The USDA is reminding consumers to wash hands and use a food thermometer this summer to avoid foodborne illness. These rules apply even when you are camping, grilling outdoors, or having a picnic. The USDA has observed, in their test kitchens, that consumers are skipping basic food safety practices, which increases the risk of suffering food poisoning. USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety Sandra Eskin said in a statement, "Our research shows that participants were not adequately washing their hands or using a food thermometer. Summer is a time to relax and enjoy delicious meals with friends and family but foodborne pathogens never rest. Following safe food handling practices during this and all other seasons can reduce the risk of you and your loved ones getting sick." A … [Read more...]

With Warmer Weather Here, Keep Food Safety in Mind

With warmer weather here at last, it's important to keep food safety in mind with these tips from the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. Picnics and barbecues mean that you are eating and preparing food in weather more conducive to the growth of potentially harmful bacteria. You should always take precautions when preparing, holding, and serving foods, but those precautions are especially important when the ambient air temperature is high. Tina Slawinski, MDARD's Food and Dairy Division Director, said in a statement, "Food which hasn’t been cooked or stored properly can cause mild foodborne illness, but it can also lead to serious illness or even death. Whether you’re packing a picnic for a sporting event or outdoor recreation, or planning a backyard barbecue, … [Read more...]

Tips for Easter Egg Hunt Safety From Fight Bac

Get tips for Easter egg hunt safety from Fight Bac. Remember that eggs are perishable foods just like meat and poultry, and should be cooked thoroughly and handled with care. Even clean, uncracked eggs can, and have been, contaminated with Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes bacteria and have caused many illnesses. When you are coloring eggs for AEser, only use eggs that have been refrigerated, and discard any cracked or dry eggs. To cook eggs, place a single layer in a cause pan and add cold water to cover the eggs by one inch. Bring the water to a full rolling boil, then remove the pan from the heat and cover it. Let the eggs stand for 18 minutes for extra large, 15 minute for large, ant 12 minutes for medium. Then drain the eggs and immediately run cold water over them. You … [Read more...]

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