If you’re stocking up for a big Christmas dinner then you might want to make some room first or you could end up with an extra present you don’t want - food poisoning.
Jersey’s Environmental Health team say they see more cases of it at this time of year and are warning of the dangers of an overstuffed fridge.
So they are dishing out some cool tips for a more hygienic festive season.
Head of Environmental Health Stewart Petrie said: “Although people are more aware of the need to be careful about handling, preparing and storing food, there is invariably a jump in food poisoning cases at this time of year. People buy more food, cook more elaborate dishes and entertain more frequently. Too much food is packed into the fridge, food is often left out on tables or counters for long periods and dishes are heated and reheated."
“I would start off with the fridge, and out would go large volumes of drink, pickles and preserves to make more room for the ‘perishables’ like turkey, ham, other raw meats and prepared/cooked foods,”
“The intention isn’t to be a party pooper, but to highlight the dangers of the stuffed fridge, where temperatures may not be adequate for food preservation. If space is at a premium, drinks can go in the cool box we use in the summer."
The department has issued this bite-sized summary of the seasonal food safety message for you if you're rushing around this Christmas: "Keep hands and all food preparation surfaces clean, keep raw meat separate from other foods, cook to proper temperatures and refrigerate leftovers quickly. Eating out? Look before you book."
Here's their top tips for an Eat Safe Christmas:
1 Eating Out – look at www.gov.je/eatsafe before you book;
2 Make a plan for your Christmas meal (top chefs do!);
3 Ensure your fridge is safe (cooked meats and ready-to-eat at the top, raw below);
4 Defrost the turkey properly before cooking (if possible in the fridge);
5 Prepare food as close as possible to eating time;
6 Use separate cutting boards for raw and cooked/ready to eat foods;
7 Keep guests and sticky fingers out of the kitchen;
8 Wash your hands thoroughly, and often;
9 Heat all food to the proper temperature (if in doubt, use a thermometer);
10 Deal with any leftovers quickly. Get them into the fridge or freezer as soon as possible, and if you are reheating make sure they are hot enough.
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