The World Health Organisations (WHO) World Health Day takes place today.
This year’s focus is on food safety, highlighting the challenges and opportunities associated with food safety.
“Food safety is vitally important, whether eating at home or going out to a local café or restaurant. While we can’t control how others prepare food, we can control where we buy our food from and how we prepare food at home. There are steps individuals can take to ensure they are protected,” said Stuart MacLeod, Shine Lawyers solicitor.
The WHO developed its ‘five keys to safer food’ these being:
- Keep clean – wash your hands before handling food and often during food preparation, wash and sanitise all surfaces and equipment used for food preparation and protect kitchen areas and food from insects, pests and other animals.
- Separate raw and cooked – separate raw meat, poultry and seafood from other foods, use separate equipment and utensils such as knives and cutting boards for handling raw foods and store foods in containers to avoid contact between raw and prepared foods.
- Cook thoroughly – cook food thoroughly, especially meat, poultry eggs and seafood, bring food like soups and stews to boiling to make sure that they have reached 70 degrees Celsius. For meat and poultry, make sure that juices are clear, not prink and reheat cooked food thoroughly.
- Keep food at safe temperatures – don’t leave cooked food at room temperature for more than 2 hours, refrigerate promptly all cooked and perishable food (preferable below 5 degrees Celsius), keep cooked food piping hot prior to serving, do not store food too long even in the refrigerator and do not thaw frozen food at room temperature.
- Use safe water and raw materials – use safe water or treated water, select fresh and wholesome foods, choose foods processed for safety such as pasteurised milk, wash fruit and vegetables especially if eaten raw and do not use food beyond its expiry date.
Written by Shine Lawyers. Last modified: April 6, 2015.