BY SONYA KAYANI
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) the majority of us will experience foodborne disease at some point in our lives. Most of us have experienced food poisoning because of poor food standards at least once, but did you know 1 in 10 people fall ill every year from contaminated food with 420,000 fatalities each year?
Here is a fool-proof guide to food safety at home.
Pick proper packages
As packaging solution experts, we can tell you that packaging is vital to ensuring the freshness of your food. While hunting for items at the grocery store, check that the packaging has not been damaged in any way or is bent out of shape as this could mean that the safety of your food has been compromised.
The best packaging is durable, prevents light and other outside factors to reach your food and most importantly, preserves your food and all its wholesome goodness.
Check the label
Always check the label to find out whether your product should be refrigerated or kept in a cupboard at room temperature. Experts suggest you keep your refrigerator below 40°F and refrigerate perishable food within 2 hours to avoid contamination.
Never thaw food on your kitchen counter, always thaw frozen food in your fridge. Bacteria will begin to grow and multiply in food left out to thaw once it reaches room temperature.
Keep it clean
This sounds like an obvious one, but make sure you wash your hands, your tools and your surfaces repeatedly during food preparation and cooking. Your food hasn’t made thousands of miles only to pick up a few nasty germs on your kitchen counter.
Keep it separate
Raw meat, poultry and fish should always be separated from each other and other food. This includes in the shopping trolley, in your fridge and when you’re cooking.
Cook it thoroughly
It is advisable to use a thermometer when cooking, to ensure your food is ready to eat. Another tip is to check if food is properly cooked is to make sure it is steaming hot all the way through. You should be looking for steam. A large dish may need to be checked in more than one place to ensure all parts are fully cooked.