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Remember food safety this Holiday Season
By Gwenda Bond or Beth Fisher
With Thanksgiving right around the corner - and food traditionally playing a large part in the festivities - the Department for Public Health (DPH) wants the public to keep safe food preparation and handling practices in mind.
Many holiday dinners incorporate meat and poultry, which are possible sources of foodborne disease - a serious public health concern that is more common than many people may realize. In fact, one in six Americans will get a foodborne illness this year.
"This holiday season, DPH urges consumers to take precautions in purchasing and preparing food items and to pay close attention to good hygiene practices," said Mark Reed, manager of DPH's food safety branch. "The principles of food safety should be observed by everyone - restaurants, caterers and the home cook preparing a family meal. By following a few simple guidelines, you will be keeping yourself and others from being exposed to dangerous germs that can lead to illness."
Holiday buffets, party trays or even a poorly stored turkey could be the culprit when it comes to disease. Improperly stored or handled food items provide breeding grounds for bacterial contamination, exposing diners to diseases such as salmonella, E. coli infection or botulism, among others.
"Foodborne illness is a serious public health concern that can have debilitating - and sometimes life-threatening effects," said Dr. Stephanie Mayfield, DPH commissioner. "Please remember to follow our recommended steps for food storage and preparation this holiday season."
Public Health recommends the following guidelines for safe food preparation, serving and storage.
Shopping for your feast:
Make room for items in your refrigerator and freezer.
For more food safety information for consumers, visit the Kentucky Food Safety Branch website at ky.gov/dph/info/phps/food.htm and click on the "Holiday Food Safety Success Kit" link.
This story was posted on 2014-11-22 08:47:55
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