Food safety in simple terms means that whatever we eat is safe to consume. This includes how we clean, prepare, cook and even store the foods we eat. According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention’s website, there are four steps to food safety. Clean, separate, cook and chill.
- Clean – wash your hands and surfaces often.
Germs get comfy on multiple surfaces quite quickly, to ensure they get stopped in their tracks, wash your hands, surfaces and food items thoroughly.
- Separate – don’t cross-contaminate.
The golden rule is to always keep raw meats separate from any other food item. This includes your trolley when shopping, in the refrigerator and your cutting boards.
- Cook – to the right temperature.
Different food is cooked safely at different temperatures, the internal temperature gets high enough to kill all of the germs that could make you ill. The internal temperature can be measured with a food thermometer. Here are a few temps to look out for;Poultry – cooked at 74֯C
Whole cuts of beef, pork and lamb – cooked at 63֯C
Fish – cooked at 63֯C
Ground meat – 71֯C
- Chill – refrigerate as soon as possible.
Freezing and thawing food is a major food safety component. Freeze perishable foods as soon as you can, divide them into portions that you will use at a given time, and know when to throw food out. Thawing food safely means not just leaving it in a sink or on a countertop, thaw food in the refrigerator, in the cold water, or by using the defrost function on your microwave.
E2Learn in partnership with Highfield International offers an internationally accredited Level 2 Certificate in Hospitality and Catering principles. (Food Production and Cooking) Upon completion of this course, students will receive a separate Highfield International Level 2 Certificate in Food Safety in Catering.