It’s that time of year where many will be enjoying the big holiday dinners at Grandmas, Aunt Sally’s or at our best friend’s house. Food plays a big part in socializing at these gatherings and is generally a large topic of conversation. While discussing how moist and delicious the turkey is, you may also need to discuss how long the turkey has been sitting on the counter.
Foodborne illness is something that can happen anywhere and at any time.
Unfortunately, during the holidays, there is an increase in foodborne illness. One of the reasons may be because people are enjoying themselves and may not be thinking of how to properly handle and care for the food as they normally would. Also, food poisoning is often due to negligence on the part of food handlers, processors and restaurants. This holiday, keep an eye on how the food you are consuming is handled and consider many of the food safety tips below:
- Washing hands – this is huge! Even though you may think your hands are clean, they probably are not. Take warm water and wash and scrub for 20 seconds before handling food.
- Dry your hands on a throw away paper towel instead of a cloth that 500 other people have used.
- Always thaw your turkey in the fridge…not at room temperature. Plan ahead if it takes five days for it to thaw. Too much bacteria can grow too quickly otherwise.
- When you cook a turkey, use a thermometer and make sure the inside reaches at least 165 degrees.
- Do not leave all the holiday food out for more than two hours. Bacteria after 4 hours can be incredibly dangerous.
- Make certain your fridge is set to 41 degrees or less for proper refrigeration.
- After 7 days, throw away any leftovers…regardless of how it smells or looks.
- Never, under any circumstances, cross contaminate your food. Never put raw chicken near the veggies!!!! For more detailed information on food safety, check out what the CDC has to say.
At the Babcock Law Firm, we hope you and your family enjoy wonderful holidays together. Eat, drink and be merry but keep these tips in mind! For more detailed information on food poisoning, please read this article in our knowledge center.
If you believe you have severe food poisoning caused by negligence on a restaurant or other food handler’s part, please call our offices serving metro-Denver and other Colorado communities to discuss your case.
Enjoy that turkey…but enjoy it carefully! And Happy Thanksgiving!