December 14, 2018

CDC Warns Against Eating Raw Dough

Warnings against eating raw dough have been issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The holiday season is when most people bake sweets, and eating raw dough and batter is a fun thing to do. But it can make you very sick. People also often make doughs for crafts, such as making Christmas ornaments. Never use raw flour for those projects. There's a special warning, too, about the Salmonella outbreak that is linked to Duncan Hines cake mixes. Check your pantry to see if you have any of these recalled cake mixes. If you do, throw them away. The problem ingredients in cookie doughs and cake batters are eggs and flour. Eggs are often contaminated with Salmonella bacteria. And flour has been linked to E. coli outbreaks in the past. Flour is a raw agricultural … [Read more...]

Holiday Food Safety Tips From the CDC Can Help Keep You Safe

The holidays are here, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is offering some tips for food safety. At this time of year, food poisoning outbreaks, especially those caused by Clostridium perfringens, can increase. First, wash your hands. Wash them before, during and after preparing food; after touching raw meat or eggs or unwashed produce; before eating or drinking; after using the bathroom; before caring for someone who is ill; and before and after treating a cut or wound. Also wash your hands after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing; after touching an animal, animal food, or animal waste; and after handling garbage. Another holiday food safety tip: make sure that all of the food you cook is cooked to a safe final internal temperature. All ground meats … [Read more...]

Thanksgiving Food Safety Tips To Keep Your Family Safe

Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday in the U.S. But the food associated with this holiday, especially the turkey and stuffing, aren't commonly made by most consumers, so there are food safety risks. Foodsafety.gov is offering help with Thanksgiving food safety tips. Safe turkey handling is especially important this year, with the CDC notice of a deadly Salmonella Reading outbreak that has sickened 160 people, hospitalized 93, and killed one person in California. Officials have named some types of Jennie-O ground raw turkey in association with this outbreak, and recalled those products, but have not identified any more brands or producers of turkey. That means it's up to the consumer to make sure the turkey is safely and properly prepared. These Thanksgiving food safety tips will … [Read more...]

Clostridium Perfringens Warning As the Holidays Approach

A Clostridium perfringens outbreak sickened hundreds of people who ate at the Poplar Tent Presbyterian Church BBQ on November 1, 2018. The Cabarrus Health Alliance reported that at least 290 people had reported symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea after that event. The bacteria that caused the illness was identified as Clostridium perfringens after food samples were tested. The bacteria was fond in the Brunswick stew. Clostridium perfringens outbreaks are common around the holidays, because the bacteria grows in food prepared in quantities. When gravies or stews are not kept at a safe temperature, the bacteria easily grows. These outbreaks happen when large groups gather, such as events with catered food, nursing homes, schools, and hospitals. So how can you prevent these … [Read more...]

Thanksgiving Turkey Food Safety Tips From the CDC

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is offering Thanksgiving turkey food safety tips, especially about your holiday turkey. This year, a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Reading has sickened at least 164 people in 35 states, hospitalized 63 of those patients, and killed one person in California. The statement says, "Food handling errors and inadequate cooing are the most common problems that lead to poultry-associated foodborne disease outbreaks in the United States." You need to know that most poultry products sold in this country are contaminated with pathogenic bacteria. For instance, Consumer Reports found that 97% of the chicken breasts they purchased were contaminated. So it's up to the consumer to protect himself. Here are the Thanksgiving food safety steps you … [Read more...]

Do You Have Meal Kits or Food Delivered? Here’s How to Keep It Safe

Do you have meal kits or food delivered to your home? This practice has exploded over the past few years. Many companies offer these services. Consumers can order food delivered from the grocery store, or order kits with preprepared food that are just assembled and heated. All this convenience is nice, but how do you make sure that those foods are safe? The CDC has some answers. All perishable foods, which include meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, and chopped or sliced fruits or vegetables, must be stored at a safe temperature to control bacterial growth. That temperature is 40°F or below. It's up to the company to pack the food and include ice packs or insulation to make sure that the food is safe. Meal Kits Delivery Steps Before you order, ask questions. Find out how the … [Read more...]

What Is the Best Way to Wash Fruits and Vegetables?

Consumers are understandably nervous about the new romaine lettuce growing season in the Yuma, Arizona region after the large E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that was linked to that product earlier this year. In that outbreak, 210 people were sickened, and 96 people were hospitalized. Five people died. So how should you, and can you, wash fruits and vegetables to help get rid of pathogens? The FDA and CDC never did solve this outbreak, and never identified a single farm or product that caused the illnesses. They did, however, find that canal water that may have been used for irrigation or to dilute crop chemicals was contaminated with the outbreak strain. One of the issues with that outbreak was that most of the illnesses were caused by chopped romaine. Lettuce from many different farms … [Read more...]

Halloween Food Safety Tips and Advice From the FDA

Halloween is tomorrow! Do you have your costume picked out, are your kids ready, and do you have enough candy? That's not all you have to think about, unfortunately. Read on for Halloween food safety tips and advice from the FDA. First of all, make sure that treats are safe for your kids before they eat any. Tell your kids not to accept or eat any candy that isn't commercially wrapped. Look at each piece for signs of tampering, which m ay include pinholes, tears in the wrapper, or strange appearance of discoloration.  Your kids should not eat from their bags while they are trick-or-treating. If your child has a food allergy, look over all the treats before she eats anything. Don't let your child eat any home-baked goods or treats. And watch out for choking hazards. Very young … [Read more...]

Fall Food Safety Tips From Public Health Officials

Fall is here, but even though the temperatures are cooler, food safety is still an issue. If you are participating in specific fall activities, follow the government's fall food safety tips to keep your family safe. People like to go apple picking, tailgate at football games, and go hiking and camping in the fall. The first step in preparing foods for these activities and in general is to make sure your hands are clean. Poor hand hygiene can cross-contaminate surfaces in your kitchen, such as refrigerator handles and countertops, with pathogenic bacteria. Wash your hands for 20 seconds using soap and water and dry with a clean towel. Raw meat and poultry are the most problematic foods. Make sure to use separate plates, utensils, and cutting boards when you work with these foods. … [Read more...]

It’s Global Handwashing Day! Learn How to Prevent Illness

October 15 is Global Handwashing Day. Correctly washing your hands is one of the best ways to stop the spread of pathogens such as E. coli, Salmonella, norovirus, Listeria monocytogenes, hepatitis A, and Campylobacter. This day is intended to increase awareness of the benefits of proper handwashing. The CDC has information on this event. It's critically important to wash your hands at certain points during your day. Always wash them with soap and water after using the bathroom, after taking care of someone who is ill, after changing diapers, and before preparing and serving food. Also wash your hands after blowing your nose, after handling pet foods, and after touching garbage. Bacteria are also found on pets, toys, surfaces such as doorknobs and countertops, and in the sink … [Read more...]

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