Food Safety Top Tips - Top ways to prevent food poisoning
Every year the UK has more than 850,000 reported cases of people experiencing food poisoning.
If you've ever been unfortunate enough to have food poisoning, you'll know how unpleasant it can be, even for a fit and healthy person. However for young and older victims food poisoning can cause serious illness and even death.
You may assume that you are more likely to contract food poisoning from restaurants, cafes and fast food outlets, however you are just as likely to get ill from food prepared at home.
Follow our top tips to reduce the risk of food poisoning at home.
Always wash your hands
Wash your hands thoroughly, using soap and hot water, before handling food. You should also wash your hand after handling raw foods (including meat, fish, eggs and vegetables), after touching bins, going to the toilet, blowing your nose, or touching pets.
Wash worktops before and after preparing food, particularly, especially after they've been touched by raw meat.
Wash dishcloths and tea towels
Keep dishcloths and tea towels clean and let them dry before you use them again. Dirty and damp cloths are the perfect breeding grounds for bacteria.
Use separate chopping boards
Use separate chopping boards for raw food and ready-to-eat food. Raw foods can contain harmful bacteria that spreads very easily to anything they touch.
Store meat on the bottom shelf
Always cover raw meat and store it on the bottom shelf of the fridge, this will prevent it from dripping onto other foods.
Cook food thoroughly
Always cook food thoroughly and check that it's piping hot all the way through. All meats should be cooked until steaming hot, with no pink meat inside.
Keep your fridge below 5°C
Keep your fridges temperature below 5°C. Keeping food cold is the first way to stop food poisoning bacteria from growing.
Cool leftovers quickly
If you have cooked food that you're not going to eat straight away, cool it as quickly as possible and store it in the fridge or freezer.
Pay attention to 'use-by' dates
Don't eat or us food past its "use-by" date. Food used past its used by dates can contain harmful bacteria that can cause food poisoning.