Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Survival At Home - Hygiene for Food

Bacteria live and thrive on almost any type of organic material. Your food provides the ideal conditions for bacteria to grow causing problems for any food you may eat if not properly stored or prepared. Most bacteria will spoil food making it taste, smell or look bad. It is important to remember that bacteria can also produce toxins, many of which have no smell or taste, and can also cause food poisoning.

Many types of food can be frozen and kept for long periods of time because the freezing temperatures prohibit the growth of bacteria. Bacteria aren’t always destroyed by freezing but simply become dormant and once your food has been thawed the bacteria will soon start to grow again. An important point to remember is to use your frozen food quickly once it has been thawed out. This limits the growth period of any bacteria that may be present. Never re-freeze frozen food items because this simply preserves the bacteria that were growing while your food was being thawed out.

Another important aspect of food hygiene is to be careful not to store or place uncooked meat items next to raw meat items. This will prevent contamination of your already cooked food from bacteria that may be present on uncooked food. Some meat items, such as chicken, already have some bacteria present and can easily contaminate your other food items, both cooked and uncooked.

One of the most common places where food contamination occurs is in the home. Poor hygiene practices are usually the cause and practicing a few simple things will help you to avoid contamination of your food. Things like countertops, cutting boards, knives and utensils and even can openers can harbor bacteria that can cause food contamination if not properly cleaned and sanitized on a regular basis or prior to food preparation.

Another vital and important part of food hygiene is a really simple thing. Keep your hands washed and clean at all times when handling your food items, especially after handling any type of raw meat. Don’t forget to clean your fingernails also because the dirt underneath your nails is also a good place for bacteria to hide.

Got food hygiene?

Staying above the water line!

Riverwalker

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I seem to remember if ice crystals are still present, its okay to refreeze, but better safe than sorry - a hospital stay with food poisoning is way more expensive and painful than just chucking it away. Or throw the 'Mother of All Bar-B-Ques', if it comes to that - your neighbors will be happy.

Good topic - you don't read much about this one - Thanks RW!

riverwalker said...

To: anonymous 7:32

It is the simple things you do at home that can make you the safest.

As far as food goes, it's best to remember the saying "When in doubt, throw it out!"

Thanks.

RW

matthiasj said...

Great tip RW. Washing your hands is very important especially with the risk of the swine flu.

matthiasj
Kentucky Preppers Network

riverwalker said...

To: matthiasj

Thanks Matt!

RW

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