One in eight Canadians (or four million people) get sick due to food illness each year according to a recent report by The Public Health Agency of Canada. The most common source of contaminated food is from your own home and from eating out. Although Canada has a very safe food supply, the fact that many people get sick from eating shows that there is much more work to be done in keeping food safe. One of the key factors in keeping food safe is education so that cooks at home and in restaurants can make good decisions to keep food safe.
Do you know the top tips to keep your food safe? Here are some common questions about important factors that can help you keep the food you eat and serve safe.
Q1: It’s always best to rinse chicken before you cook it.
A: False. Rinsing the chicken can spread the bacteria around your kitchen and increase the risk of a food-borne illness. When you fully cook your chicken to a safe internal temperature, the bacteria will be killed.
Q2: Bacteria can’t survive in a cold refrigerator.
A: False. Some bacteria can survive & grow in cool, moist places like the fridge. Listeria monocytogens is a good example and it can cross contaminate other foods in your fridge.
Q3: You can tell if a food is cooked by looking at it.
A: False. The best way to tell if your food is cooked properly is to use a food thermometer.
Q4: What are the most important organisms responsible for causing food-borne illness in Canada?
A: Norovirus, Clostridium perfringens, Campylobacter and Salmonella.
Q 5: What is one of the best ways to reduce the risk of foodborne illness?
A: Wash your hands, and I mean really wash your hands for 20 seconds using hot water and soap.
Want to learn more about safe food handling practices and earn your food safety certificate? We offer government approved TRAINCAN programs about safe food handling practices that meet regulations and accreditation standards for provincial and municipal certification. BASICS.fst Food Safety Training (Employee Level Training) and ADVANCED.fst Food Safety Training (Managerial and Supervisor Level Training) are taught by experienced registered dietitians -nutritionists.