Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Food Safety Part Two: Separate

By Indiana Board of Animal Health's Denise Derrer

This is part two of our four part series on Food Safety. To read Part One: Clean, click here.


“Separate.  Don’t cross-contaminate.” 

“Separate.  Don’t cross-contaminate.” 

Fight BAC!® won’t stop reciting the second of four aspects to proper food safety.  Poor handling of raw meat and poultry products can create an environment for harmful microorganisms to grow, which can spread to foods throughout the kitchen. 

The easiest way to limit cross-contamination in the kitchen is to keep two separate cutting boards.  Maintain one cutting board specifically to chop fresh produce, and the other for handling raw meat, poultry, seafood or eggs.  You may want to invest in a third for carving or cutting cooked meat products.
Fight BAC!® continues to lecture about cross-contamination by highlighting two key phrases for consumers to remember; Keep it Clean and Watch Those Juices!

Keep it clean in the kitchen by always washing your hands for 20 seconds in hot, soapy water before and after handling food, use two separate cutting boards, and never place cooked foods back on a plate that held raw foods.

Separating raw meat and poultry items from other foods in your grocery cart, shopping bags and refrigerator is the first step to watching those raw meat juices.  Consumers should also keep raw foods in sealed containers or plastic bags and place them on the bottom refrigerator shelf to keep the juices from dripping onto other foods.  Also, sauces made from marinades should not be used in cooking unless the marinade is boiled first. 

To help one of our facebook fans keep his or her foods separate, a set of storage containers is provided in the food safety kit giveaway. To enter to win the kit, just leave us a comment on Facebook about how you keep your food safe, clean and separate.

Facebook Fan Charity shared yesterday : 

Clean food areas: I have cutting mats of differnt colors for no cross contamination - red/beef, yellow/chicken and green/produce.. I also always use a baking mat when rolling out dough... no matter how clean a counter top is, I still want something between that counter and my food!

What is your tip?

Additional tips about maintaining separate food-preparation surfaces can be found on the Indiana State Board of Animal Health website, www.boah.in.gov, or the Fight BAC!® webpage www.fightbac.org.  


Leontien said...

Jep! can't agree more with the whole separate chopping boards. I used to work in a restaurant and we had 5 different onces i think
yellow = greens and vegetables
red = fish
blue = meat and chicken uncooked
white = cooked products
wooden = bread and pasteries

Now at home i'm not so diverse anymore although i ALWAYS wash my board between greens/meats/bread

Thanks for the info!



Jeannie said...

I am terrible about using the same cuttung board for meat and vegetables! I rinse it but clearly not enough - thanks for this important reminder!