3 How Times Have ChangedA lot has changed – including the way food is produced, distributed.Formerly, food produced close to home.Many shopped daily, prepared and ate food at home.In past, restaurant dining reserved for special occasions.
4 How Times Have Changed Marketplace reflects global food choices. Nearly 50% of food dollars are from foods that others prepare, like "carry out” or restaurant meals.New, dangerous bacteria and viruses found in food – unknown years ago.Science identified illnesses caused by bacteria and viruses in food.
5 Recognizing Foodborne Illness Foodborne illness, while dangerous, is often easy to prevent.Following basic rules of food safety, you can prevent foodborne illness for self and others.Difficult for people to recognize when harmful bacteria from food made them ill.Difficult to tell if food is unsafe, because you can’t see, smell, or taste the bacteria it may contain.
6 Recognizing Foodborne Illness Foodborne illness is sometimes confused with other illnesses, such as a stomach illness or flu symptoms.Signs & symptoms of foodborne illness:- upset stomach- diarrhea- fever-vomiting-abdominal cramps-dehydration-more severe illness, even deathIf you are unsure of your condition, the best thing is to check with your doctor.And if you become ill after eating out, also call your local health department so they can investigate.Consumers can take simple measures to reduce their risk of foodborne illness, especially in the home.
7 Food Safety FactsAnnually, 76 million people in the United States become ill from harmful bacteria in food; and about 5,000 die.There are more than 5 times the number of dangerous bacteria in food than we were aware of in 1942.One may become sick anytime from 20 minutes to 6 weeks after eating food with harmful bacteria.The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention annual estimates
8 Some People Face Special Risks Some people are more likely to get sick from harmful bacteria in food.Once sick, these individuals face risk of serious health problems, even death.Those at greatest risk include:-infants & young children.-pregnant women.-older adults.-others with weakened immune systems.A variety of people may face these special risks -- pregnant women and young children, people with chronic illnesses and weakened immune systems and older adults, including people over 65. Those with weakened immune systems include those individuals with cancer treatment, AIDS, diabetes, kidney disease, and organ transplants.
9 Why are Older Adults More Susceptible to Foodborne Illness? Immune systems weaken with age.Stomach acid decreases, which plays important role in reducing number of bacteria in intestinal tract.Underlying illnesses (such as diabetes, cancer treatments, and kidney disease) may increase risk of foodborne illness.Everyone's health is different, including his or her ability to fight off disease.
10 People who face special risks should not eat: Raw fin fish and shellfish, including oysters, clams, mussels and scallops.Hot dogs and luncheon meats, unless reheated until steaming hot.Raw or unpasteurized milk or soft cheeses, such as feta, Brie, Camembert, blue-veined and Mexican-style cheese (unless labeled "made with pasteurized milk“).Refrigerated pates or meat spreads (canned or shelf-stable pates and meat spreads may be eaten)Refrigerated smoked seafood (unless contained in a cooked dish, such as a casserole).Refrigerated smoked seafood, such as salmon, trout, whitefish, cod, tuna, or mackerel, is often labeled as "nova-style," "lox," "kippered," "smoked," or "jerky." These products are found in the refrigerator section or sold at deli counters of grocery stores and delicatessens. Canned or shelf-stable smoked seafood may be eaten.
11 People who face special risks should not eat: Raw or lightly cooked egg or egg products containing raw eggs such as salad dressings, cookie or cake batter, sauces, and beverages such as egg nog.Raw meat or poultry.Raw sprouts (alfalfa, clover and radish).Unpasteurized or untreated fruit or vegetable juice (these juices will carry a warning label).(Foods made from commercially pasteurized eggs are safe to eat.)
12 Be Food Safe Clean: Wash Hands and Surfaces Often Wash hands with soap andwarm water for 20 seconds.Always wash hands with warm, soapy water:before handling foodafter handling foodafter using the bathroomafter changing a diaperafter tending to a sick personafter blowing nose, coughing or sneezingafter handling petsBe food safe. Clean. Cleanliness is a major factor in preventing foodborne illness. Even with food safety inspection and monitoring at Federal, State, and local government facilities, the consumer’s role is to make sure food is handled safely after it is purchased. Everything that touches food should be clean. If your hands have any kind of skin abrasion or infection, always use clean disposable gloves. Wash hands (gloved or not) with warm, soapy water. Thoroughly wash with hot, soapy water all surfaces that come in contact with raw meat, poultry, fish, and eggs before moving on to the next step in food preparation.Consider using paper towels to clean kitchen surfaces. If you use dishcloths, wash them often in the hot cycle of your washing machine. Keep other surfaces, such as faucets and counter tops, clean by washing with hot, soapy water. Don't use the same platter and utensils that held the raw product to serve the cooked product. Any bacteria present in the raw meat or juices can contaminate the safely cooked product. Serve cooked products on clean plates, using clean utensils and clean hands.Keep pets, household cleaners, and other chemicals away from food and surfaces used for food.When picnicking or cooking outdoors, take plenty of clean utensils. Pack clean, dry, and wet and soapy cloths for cleaning surfaces and hands.Because bacteria are everywhere, cleanliness is a major factor in preventing foodborne illness. By keeping everything clean that comes in contact with food, consumers can be assured they are helping to do their part to Fight BAC!®
13 Be Food Safe Clean Cutting Boards Bacteria can spread throughout kitchen and get on hands, cutting boards, knives and countertops; frequent cleaning can keep from this from happening.Run cutting boards and utensils through dishwasher or wash in hot soapy water after each use.The four easy lessons of Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill can help prevent harmful bacteria from making your family sick.Be food safe. Clean. The four easy lessons of Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill can help prevent harmful bacteria from making your family sick. To find out more about food safety, visit befoodsafe.gov Questions? Click on Ask Karen or call MPHotline.To keep cutting boards clean, wash them in hot, soapy water after each use; then rinse and air or pat dry with clean paper towels. Cutting boards can be sanitized with a solution of 1 tablespoon of unscented, liquid chlorine bleach per gallon of water. Flood the surface with the bleach solution and allow it to stand for several minutes; then rinse and air or pat dry with clean paper towels. Non-porous acrylic, plastic, glass, and solid wood boards can be washed in a dishwasher (laminated boards may crack and split). Even plastic boards wear out over time. Once cutting boards become excessively worn or develop hard-to-clean grooves, replace them.Keep countertops clean by washing with hot, soapy water after preparing food.
14 Be Food Safe, SeparateUse one cutting board for raw meat, poultry and seafood and another for salads and ready-to-eat food.Keep raw meat, poultry and seafood and their juices apart from other food items in grocery cart.SEPARATE: Cross-contamination is how bacteria can be spread. When handling raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs, keep these foods and their juices away from ready-to-eat foods. Always start with a clean scene -- wash hands with warm water and soap. Wash cutting boards, dishes, countertops and utensils with hot soapy water. Separate raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs from other foods in your grocery shopping cart, grocery bags and in your refrigerator. Use one cutting board for fresh produce and a separate one for raw meat, poultry and seafood. Never place cooked food on a plate that previously held raw meat, poultry, seafood or eggs. Cross-contamination is how bacteria spreads. Keep raw meat, poultry, and seafood and their juices away from ready-to-eat food. The four easy lessons of Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill can help prevent harmful bacteria from making your family sick.Store raw meat, poultry and seafood in container or on plate, so juices can’t drip on other foods.
15 Be Food Safe, CookLooking at color and texture of food is not enough—you have to use a food thermometer to be sureAccording to USDA research, 1 out of every 4 hamburgers turns brown before it reaches safe internal temperatureMany people assume that if a hamburger is brown in the middle, it is done. The only safe way to know if meat, poultry, and egg dishes are "done" is to use a food thermometer. When a hamburger is cooked to 160 °F, it is both safe and delicious! Be Food Safe! Prepare With Care Know how to prepare, handle, and store food safely to keep you and your family safe. Bacteria can grow on meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, and dairy products, as well as cut-up or cooked vegetables and fruits. COOK: Food is safely cooked when it reaches a high enough internal temperature to kill the harmful bacteria that cause foodborne illness. Use a food thermometer to measure the internal temperature of cooked foods. Use a food thermometer which measures the internal temperature of cooked meat, poultry and egg dishes, to make sure that the food is cooked to a safe internal temperature. Cook roasts and steaks to a minimum of 145°F. All poultry should reach a safe minimum internal temperature of 165°F as measured with a food thermometer. Check the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast with a food thermometer. Cook ground meat, where bacteria can spread during grinding, to at least 160°F.
16 Thermy's™ Food Safety Rules Always use food thermometer when cooking. Place thermometer in thickest part of foods, away from bones and fat.Cook food to safe internal temperature. Temperatures are in degrees Fahrenheit (°F).Check temperature in several places to ensure even cooking.Wash food thermometer with hot, soapy water after using it.A food thermometer will help you make sure your food has reached a high enough temperature to kill harmful bacteria.The color of cooked meat--whether it's pink or brown inside--can fool you. The only way to be sure cooked food is safe to eat is by using a food thermometer.
17 "Is it done yet. " You can't tell by looking "Is it done yet?" You can't tell by looking. Use a food thermometer to be sure. IsItDoneYet.gov Thermometers Aren't Just for Turkey Anymore These days, food thermometers aren't just for your holiday roasts—they're for all cuts and sizes of meat and poultry, including hamburgers, chicken breasts, and pork chops. Using a food thermometer when cooking meat, poultry, and even egg dishes is the only reliable way to make sure you are preparing a safe and delicious meal for your family.
18 Kitchen ThermometersFood thermometer should be used to ensure cooked food is held at safe temperatures until served.Many types of food thermometers, important to follow instructions for your food thermometer.Cold foods should be held at 40° F or below.Hot food should be kept hot at 140° F or above.
19 Thermometer Tips Dial oven-safe: Thermometer inserted into food at beginning of cooking time and remains in food throughout cooking.Check thermometer as food cooks, to know exactly when thick cuts of meat, such as roasts or turkeys, are cooked to safe temperature.This type of thermometer is not appropriate for use with food that is thin, like boneless chicken breast. USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline MPHotline ( ) TTY:
20 Thermometer TipsDial instant-read:Thermometer not designed to stay in food during cooking; when you think food is cooked to safe temperature, check with instant-read thermometer.Insert instant-read thermometer into thickest part to point marked on the probe – usually to depth of 2 inches.15 to 20 seconds required for temperature display.This type of thermometer can be used with thin food, such as chicken breasts or hamburger patty--simply insert the probe sideways, making sure that the tip of the probe reaches the center of the meat. Use an instant-read food thermometer to check the internal temperature toward the end of the cooking time, but before the food is expected to be "done."
21 Thermometer Tips Digital instant-read: Thermometer does not stay in food duringcooking – check temperature when you think food is cooked; advantage – heat-sensing device is in the tip of the probe.Place tip of probe in center of thickest part offood--at least 1/2 inch deep10 seconds required for temperature to be displayedThis type of thermometer is good to use for checking the temperature of a thin food like a hamburger patty. Just insert the probe from the top or sideways to a depth of 1/2 inch.(FYI: Pop-up timers are reliable within 1 to 2 degrees, but it's best to check with a food thermometer.)
22 Be Food Safe, CookStir, rotate the dish and cover food when microwaving to prevent cold spots where bacteria can survive.Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) links eating undercooked ground beef with a higher risk of illness. Remember, color is not a reliable indicator of doneness. Use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of your burgers. Cook eggs until the yolk and white are firm, not runny. Don't use recipes in which eggs remain raw or only partially cooked. Cook fish to 145°F or until the flesh is opaque and separates easily with a fork. Make sure there are no cold spots in food (where bacteria can survive) when cooking in a microwave oven. For best results, cover food, stir and rotate for even cooking. If there is no turntable, rotate the dish by hand once or twice during cooking. Bring sauces, soups and gravy to a boil when reheating. Heat other leftovers thoroughly to 165°F.COOK: Food is safely cooked when it reaches a high enough internal temperature to kill the harmful bacteria that cause foodborne illness. Use a food thermometer to measure the internal temperature of cooked foods. Use a food thermometer which measures the internal temperature of cooked meat, poultry and egg dishes, to make sure that the food is cooked to a safe internal temperature. Cook roasts and steaks to a minimum of 145°F. All poultry should reach a safe minimum internal temperature of 165°F as measured with a food thermometer. Check the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast with a food thermometer.Cook ground meat, where bacteria can spread during grinding, to at least 160°F. Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) links eating undercooked ground beef with a higher risk of illness. Remember, color is not a reliable indicator of doneness. Use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of your burgers.Bring sauces, soups and gravies to rolling boil when reheating.
23 Be Food Safe, CoolAt room temperature, bacteria in food can double in 20 minutes.Refrigerate foods quickly; cold temperatures keep most harmful bacteria from multiplying.Won't harm refrigerator to place warm food inside; will keep food – and you – safe.Set home refrigerator to 40°F or below.Set freezer unit to 0°F or below.Refrigerator (40°F) and Freezer Storage Chart discuss(0°F). Any cut or peeled produce that is left at room temperature for more than two hours should be discarded. Check the temperature occasionally with an appliance thermometer.CHILL: Refrigerate foods quickly because cold temperatures slow the growth of harmful bacteria. Do not over-stuff the refrigerator. Cold air must circulate to help keep food safe. Keeping a constant refrigerator temperature of 40°F or below is one of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of foodborne illness. Use an appliance thermometer to be sure the temperature is consistently 40°F or below. The freezer temperature should be 0°F or below. Refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry, eggs and other perishables as soon as you get them home from the store.Never let raw meat, poultry, eggs, cooked food or cut fresh fruits or vegetables sit at room temperature more than two hours before putting them in the refrigerator or freezer (one hour when the temperature is above 90°F).Never defrost food at room temperature. Food must be kept at a safe temperature during thawing.Use an appliance thermometer to check temperatures.
24 Chill: Did You Know?Refrigerate or freeze perishables, prepared food and leftovers within 2 hours.Divide large amounts of leftovers into shallow containers for quick cooling in refrigerator.There are three safe ways to defrost food: in the refrigerator, in cold water, and in the microwave. Food thawed in cold water or in the microwave should be cooked immediately. Always marinate food in the refrigerator. Divide large amounts of leftovers into shallow containers for quicker cooling in the refrigerator. Use or discard refrigerated food on a regular basis. Bacteria spreads fastest at temperatures between 40 °F °F, so chilling food properly is one of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of foodborne illness. The quality of certain perishable fresh fruits and vegetables (such as strawberries, lettuce, herbs and mushrooms) can be maintained best by storing in the refrigerator. If you are uncertain whether an item should be refrigerated to maintain quality, ask your grocer.All produce purchased pre-cut or peeled should be refrigerated for safety as well as quality.Produce cut or peeled at home should be refrigerated within two hours.Any cut or peeled produce that is left at room temperature for more than two hours should be discardedChill leftovers and takeout foods within 2 hours, and divide food into shallow containers for rapid cooling.
25 Be Food Safe, ThawThaw meat, poultry and seafood in the fridge, not on counter, and don't overstuff fridge.Never thaw foods at room temperature; safely thaw food in refrigerator.Thaw food outside refrigerator by immersing in cold water; change water every half hour to keep water cold; cook immediately after thawing.Thaw food in the microwave, then, be sure to continue cooking right away.Marinate foods in the refrigerator.Don't pack refrigerator too full; cold air must circulate to keep food safe.The Big Thaw - Safe Defrosting Methods for Consumers Uh, oh! You're home and forgot to defrost something for dinner. You grab a package of meat or chicken and use hot water to thaw it fast. But is this safe? What if you remembered to take food out of the freezer, but forgot and left the package on the counter all day while you were at work? Neither of these situations is safe, and these methods of thawing lead to foodborne illness. Food must be kept at a safe temperature during "the big thaw." Foods are safe indefinitely while frozen. However, as soon as food begins to defrost and become warmer than 40 °F, any bacteria that may have been present before freezing can begin to multiply. Foods should never be thawed or even stored on the counter, or defrosted in hot water. Food left above 40 °F (unrefrigerated) is not at a safe temperature. Even though the center of the package may still be frozen as it thaws on the counter, the outer layer of the food is in the "Danger Zone," between 40 and 140 °F – at temperatures where bacteria multiply rapidly. When defrosting frozen foods, it's best to plan ahead and thaw food in the refrigerator where food will remain at a safe, constant temperature – 40 °F or below. There are three safe ways to defrost food: in the refrigerator, in cold water, and in the microwave. Refrigerator Thawing -planning ahead is the key to this method because of the lengthy time involved. A large frozen item like a turkey requires at least a day (24 hours) for every 5 pounds of weight. Even small amounts of frozen food -- such as a pound of ground meat or boneless chicken breasts -- require a full day to thaw. When thawing foods in the refrigerator, there are several variables to take into account. Some areas of an appliance may keep the food colder than other areas. Food placed in the coldest part will require longer defrosting time. Food takes longer to thaw in a refrigerator set at 35 °F than one set at 40 °F.After thawing in the refrigerator, ground meat and poultry should remain useable for an additional day or two before cooking; red meat, 3 to 5 days. Foods defrosted in the refrigerator can be refrozen without cooking, although there may be some loss of quality. Cold Water Thawing-This method is faster than refrigerator thawing but requires more attention. The food must be in a leak-proof package or plastic bag. If the bag leaks, bacteria from the air or surrounding environment could be introduced into the food. Also, meat tissue can also absorb water like a sponge, resulting in a watery product. The bag should be submerged in cold tap water, changing the water every 30 minutes so it continues to thaw. Small packages of meat or poultry – about a pound – may defrost in an hour or less. A 3- to 4-pound package may take 2 to 3 hours. For whole turkeys, estimate about 30 minutes per pound. If thawed completely, the food must be cooked immediately. Foods thawed by the cold water method should be cooked before refreezing. Microwave Thawing-When microwave defrosting food, plan to cook it immediately after thawing because some areas of the food may become warm and begin to cook during microwave defrosting. Holding partially cooked food is not recommended because any bacteria present wouldn't have been destroyed and, indeed, may have reached optimal temperatures for bacteria to grow. Foods thawed in the microwave should be cooked before refreezing. Four to 5 pounds takes 24 hours to thaw.
26 Eating Out, Bringing InSometimes it is easier and more enjoyable to let someone else do the cooking; there are many eating options.All of these options, however, do have food safety implications.
27 Complete Meals-to-Go and Home-delivered Meals Meals may be purchased from grocery stores, deli stores or restaurants.Ordering home-delivered meals from restaurants or restaurant-delivery services is also an option.For those who qualify, Meals on Wheels provide a ready-prepared meal each day.Hot or cold ready-prepared meals are perishable and can cause illness when mishandled.Proper handling is essential to ensure the food is safe.
28 Eating OutGoal is to have both a safe and enjoyable dining experience when dining out – (restaurant, senior center or fast-food diner).State and local health departments set the guidelines that all food service establishments are required to follow.Eating Out; Clean: When you go out to eat, look at how clean things are before you even sit down. If it's not up to your standards, you might want to eat somewhere else; Cook: No matter where you eat out, always order your food cooked thoroughly to a safe internal temperature. Remember that foods like meat, poultry, fish, and eggs need to be cooked thoroughly to kill harmful bacteria. When you're served a hot meal, make sure it's served to you piping hot and thoroughly cooked, and if it's not, send it back. Especially if you have risk factors, don't eat undercooked or raw foods, such as raw oysters or raw or undercooked eggs. Undercooked or raw eggs can be a hidden hazard in some foods like Caesar salad, custards and some sauces. If these foods are made with commercially pasteurized eggs, however, they are safe. If you are unsure about the ingredients in a particular dish, ask before ordering it.
29 The Doggie BagIf you will not be arriving home within 2 hours of being served (1 hour if temperatures are above 90° F), it is safer to leave leftovers at restaurant.Remember, the inside of a car can get warm; bacteria grow rapidly. It is safer to go directly home after eating and put leftovers in refrigerator.Some senior centers do not allow food to be taken away from site because it is easy for bacteria to multiply to dangerous levels when food is left unrefrigerated too long.
30 Be Food Safe: Summary Putting the 2-hour Rule Into Action HOT FOODS: When you purchase hot cooked food, keep it hot.Eat food within 2 hours to prevent harmful bacteria from multiplying.If not eating within 2 hours – and want to keep food hot – keep food in oven set at temperature to keep food at or above 140° F.COLD FOODS should be eaten within 2 hours or refrigerated or frozen for eating at another time.Side dishes, like stuffing, must also stay hot in the oven.Covering food will help keep it moist. Your cooked food will taste better if you don’t try to keep it in the oven for too long. Refrigerate the food and then reheat when you are ready to eat. Divide meat or poultry into small portions to refrigerate or freeze. Refrigerate or freeze gravy, potatoes, and other vegetables in shallow containers. Remove stuffing from whole cooked poultry and refrigerate.(When temperatures are above 90°F, discard food after 1 hour!)Reheating: For safety, you may wish to reheat your meal, whether it was purchased hot and then refrigerated, or purchased cold initially. Heat the food to 165 degrees F; bring gravy to a rolling boil; if heating in a microwave oven, cover food and rotate the dish so the food heats evenly and doesn’t leave “cold spots” that could harbor bacteria.
31 Web site ResourcesCheck out the senior food safety Web resource jointly sponsored by the Food and Drug Administration and AARP atFederal food safety – including the Food and Drug Administration ( the Food Safety and Inspection Service ( and joint-Federal information at (Partnership for Food Safety Education at
32 Be Food SafeIf you have questions, please call the following toll-free hotlines:The Food and Drug Administration Hotline can answer questions about safe handling of seafood, fruits and vegetables, as well as rules that govern food safety in restaurants and grocery stores: SAFEFOOD.The USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline can answer questions about safe handling of meat and poultry as well as many other consumer food issues: MPHotline ( ).
33 Be Food Safe, USDA and the Partnership for Food Safety Education ResourcesBe Food Safe, USDA and the Partnership for Food Safety EducationTo Your Health-Food Safety for Seniors, 2006; FDA; USDA, FSISMade available by:Dr. Sally Soileau, Nutrition Extension Agent, LSU AgCenter