A critical part of healthy eating is keeping foods safe. In your own homes you can reduce contaminants and keep food safe to eat by following safe food handling practices. Four basic food safety principles work together to reduce the risk of foodborne illness — clean, separate, cook and chill.
- Wash hands with soap and clean running water. Rub hands together to make a lather and scrub all parts of the hand for 20 seconds.
- Rinse hands thoroughly and dry using a clean paper towel.
- Sink and table surfaces should be washed with hot, soapy water.
- Clean sweep refrigerated foods once a week. At least once a week, throw out refrigerated foods that should no longer be eaten.
- Cooked leftovers should be discarded after four days; raw poultry and ground meats, one to two days.
- Clean the inside and the outside of appliances. Pay particular attention to buttons and handles where cross-contamination to hands can occur.
- Rinse fresh vegetables and fruits under running water just before eating, cutting, or cooking. Even if you plan to peel or cut the produce before eating, it is important to thoroughly rinse it first to prevent microbes from transferring from the outside to the inside of the produce.
- Separate foods when shopping. Place raw seafood, meat, and poultry in plastic bags. Store them below ready-to-eat foods in your refrigerator.
- Separate foods when preparing and serving.
- Always use a clean cutting board for fresh produce and a separate one for raw seafood, meat, and poultry.
- Never place cooked food back on the same plate or cutting board that previously held raw food.
Sourced from Vanguardnews