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How Important Is Food Safety?

January 5, 2015

When there is a recall or food contamination risk it seems there is public panic. Many times I and others have commented on the casual view of food safety when it comes to the handling in the home. This is out of the control of farmers and processors. A recent study showed 90% of preschool lunches, whether iced or not, reached unsafe temperatures that meant they were prone to increased bacteria. While this didn’t necessarily mean kids got sick, it does warrant attention.

“Ninety percent of the 705-preschooler sack lunches tested by University of Texas scientists had risen to temperatures considered too high to prevent the growth of bacteria, the researchers reported Monday in the journal Pediatrics. Unsafe,  as the researchers defined it, was anything that sat for more than two hours between 39 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit.” It also reported “Moms interviewed by msnbc.com took the new findings with a grain of salt. ”

This is a much different picture than panic demands for food safety when some processor has a smaller risk of contamination or when a farm is stated to be a risk. All share the responsibility of food safety…learn safe food handling to protect you and your family!

Keep hot food hot and cold food cold. Pay attention to lunches. Keep counters and utensils clean. Heed safe food handling measures.

The risk may be small and people do it for years without an issue – but the risk that prompts recall of thousands of pounds of food because there *might* be something in it is also small. Should that be brushed aside as too little to deal with? I don’t think so!

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