Preventing Foodborne Illnesses From the Farm to the Fridge
Where It All Begins
Hot, Cold, and Clean
- Cook food thoroughly, particularly eggs, meat, and poultry.
- Eggs should be cooked until the yolk is firm.
- Use a thermometer to make sure meat and poultry are cooked well.
- Look on packaging or on most thermometers for recommended temperatures.
- Keep leftovers refrigerated. Keep your refrigerator temperature set at 40ºF(4ºC) or below.
- Wash fruits and vegetables before eating.
- Wash your hands before preparing a meal.
- Avoid activities like changing a baby’s diaper while preparing food.
- Keep food separate while preparing the meal.
- Wash kitchen utensils and surfaces between foods.
- When dining out, check to see the health department rating of your restaurant.
- Also when dining out, ask that your food be cooked thoroughly.
- Check if food with eggs, like omelets, are made from pasteurized eggs.
Food for Thought
- Sushi and other raw fish, especially shellfish
- Unpasteurized milks and juices
- Ready to eat meats—hot dogs or luncheon meats
- Soft cheeses, unless they are labeled as made from pasteurized milk
- Refrigerated pates or meat spreads
- Refrigerated smoked seafood (safe if it is cooked)
- Raw eggs
- Unwashed fruits and vegetables
Fight BAC! http://www.fightbac.org/
National Restaurant Association http://www.restaurant.org/
Canadian Food Inspection Agency http://www.inspection.gc.ca/
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/
Bacteria and foodborne illness. National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse website. http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/bacteria/. Updated August 10, 2012. Accessed September 24, 2012.
Foodborne disease outbreaks are deadly serious—what you can do to avoid them. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available: http://www.cdc.gov/Features/dsFoodborneOutbreaks/. Updated September 15, 2011. Accessed September 24, 2012.
Foodborne illness. US Food and Drug Administration website. Available at: http://www.foodsafety.gov/~mow/foodborn.html. Accessed November 22, 2008.
Food-borne risks in pregnancy. March of Dimes website. Available at: http://www.marchofdimes.com/professionals/14332%5F1152.asp. Updated May 2008. Accessed September 24, 2012.
- Reviewer: Brian Randall, MD
- Review Date: 09/2012 -
- Update Date: 09/24/2012 -
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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