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Food Safety: as important now as it ever was

Well, we’re all in it for the long haul. Covid-19 has changed our world forever and whilst the priority is to keep people safe from the virus, we must still think about food safety. According to the Food and Drug Administration “Currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. Unlike foodborne gastrointestinal (GI) viruses like norovirus and hepatitis A that often make people ill through contaminated food, SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, is a virus that causes respiratory illness. Foodborne exposure to this virus is not known to be a route of transmission”.

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. This includes between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet), and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Many people understandably went out and bought lots of food and now they need to be careful of how it is stored, prepared and handled so we do not cause illness through food poisoning. Four simple rules have always applied, and they are more important now than ever.

Clean - hands, surfaces and utensils. Handwashing is the golden step in all activities There are so many wonderful resources online now showing the correct methods of hand washing. Clean and sanitise all worktops, surfaces, and utensils.

Separate - always keep raw foods separate from cooked or ready to eat foods, during storage, preparation and service.

Cook – make sure to cook all foods to a core temperature of 75°C or until the juices run clear, especially for pork, poultry and mince products

Chill: Keep all perishable foods in a fridge below 5°C (really cold to the touch). Do not overload fridges and keep good air circulation in the fridge.

The Food Safety Professionals Association wants everyone to ride out the storm and most of all we hope you will stay well, stay safe and stay informed.

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