Prevent Harmful Bacteria
Texas Restaurant Equipment invites you to review your Food Safety Tips and Techniques. With so many instances of food contamination on various levels, it is growing ever more important to make sure your are doing all you can to stop bacteria at the source in your facility. Whether it is in a grill, cafe, coffee shop, restaurant, drive thru, institution, or school, Food Safety 101 can't be compromised. Lives are at risk. With consequences so severe, Texas Restaurant Equipment has some reminder tips to review with your staff that will prevent any issues with your company. Remember that some foods are more often associated with food poisoning or foodborne illness. Food Safety.gove is dedicated to making sure you have all the best information and so are we.
Prevention of bacteria means with these foods, it is especially important to:
- CLEAN: Keep your hands washed and make sure food preparation surfaces are cleaned often. Wash fresh fruits and vegetables carefully. Use products available to prevent bacteria after shipping where possible.
- SEPARATE: Make sure food surfaces do not cross contaminate on surfaces, utensils, bowls and pots. It is critical when handling raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs, to keep these foods and their juices away from ready-to-eat foods at all times. Never use cutting boards, wood boards, packaging for multiple types of raw meats poultry seafood and eggs. Designate by color where possible with matching posters to help staff remember.
- COOK: Cook all prepared foods to proper temperature. Review Minimum Cooking Temperatures charts for details on cooking meats, poultry, eggs, leftovers, and casseroles, and keep posters and charts easily seen to make that happen in every kitchen prep areas.
- CHILL: Remember to chill at room temperature. Bacteria in food can double every 20 minutes, and the more bacteria you have the greater chance there is for sickness. Quick chilling means cold temperatures prevent most harmful bacteria from multiplying.
Texas Restaurant Equipment wants you to have the latest tips and techniques to keep all foods safe and prevent food poisoning in every facility you own. Let's take a look by category and help with some specifics just for a review. Remember too, you may have employees that are new and some while food handling certificates may be required for hire, it may have been years since things have been revisited.
Food Handling Tips:
- Meat - Raw meats can contain bacteria, such as E. coli, salmonella, and listeria, or parasites. Cooking destroys these harmful organisms, but meat can become contaminated again if it is not handled and stored properly. Proper handling tips can be reviewed in Food Safety meetings monthly, and posters and binders placed in critical areas of kitchen and food prep areas for easy access.
- Turkey - With the Holidays coming up, Turkey is a prime candidate for foodborne illness if it is not thawed, prepared, cooked and stored with care for all those holiday meals and parties. Now is the time to have a review of your current Food Safety 101 guidelines for each facility you own.
- Chicken and Other Poultry - Poultry also may contain harmful bacteria such as salmonella, listeria, and campylobacter. Simply washing chicken and other poultry does not remove bacteria. You can kill these bacteria only by cooking chicken to the proper temperature. Make sure proper thermometers for each staff member are on their person, and have plenty of extras as you gear up for the Holiday Seasons.
- Seafood - Like raw meat, raw seafood can contain bacteria that can be destroyed only by cooking. While some fresh seafood is available in your locale, prior processing with reputable sources is critical to peace of mind on foodbourne illness. Make sure your staff is aware of the type of toxins like mercury which can be harmful for young children or the unborn. Menu inserts can serve as reminders to parents prior to ordering.
- Eggs and All Egg Products - All Fresh eggs must be handled with extreme care. Even eggs with clean, uncracked shells may occasionally contain salmonella. Prevention of food poisoning is critical in every kitchen. Keep all eggs refrigerated upon arrival, make sure to cook eggs until yolks are firm, and cook foods containing eggs properly.
- Milk, Cheese, and Dairy Products - Raw milk, as well as cheeses made with raw milk, can contain E. coli, salmonella, and listeria. While you may be testing if you are a manufacturer, make sure all areas are subject to proper cleaning. Pasteurization of milk is required for these items and usually kills harmful bacteria. Cheese and other dairy like sour creme, creme frache, and buttermilk stocks need to be rotated and kept in a central location where access is not limited.
- Fresh Fruits, Vegetables, and Juices - Bagged salads, salads with meats, chicken, and seafoods, and eggs could come into contact with sources that could be contaminated. Check all recalls from nationwide sources, and treat all vegetable juices and fruit to make sure. Contaminated soil and water in the fields is a big deal in some countries, including the USA; no one is immune from bacteria. Food Safety means you employ measures to prevent contamination at all times.
- Nuts, Grains, and Beans - Nuts, grains, beans, and other legumes, and their by-products, are found in a wide variety of foods such as butters, cereals both hot and cold, and flours and seeds. Since these foods are ingredients in so many food products, contamination or mislabeling of allergens can pose a widespread risk. Make sure all these items are safely packaged, sealed, and stored properly. Proper stock rotation of nuts is necessary. Make sure dates are clearly visible at all times for health inspections, rotation in coolers and freezers.
- Baby Food and Infant Formula - If you have an institution, day care, hospital, or school setting, remember that infants and young children are particularly vulnerable to foodborne illness because their immune systems are not developed enough to fight off infections. Honey is a known contaminate for all children under one year, and extra care should be taken when handling and preparing their food and formula.
- Pet Food - With the rising number of pet stores preparing snacks, biscuits, and commercial food that requires freezing or refrigeration, if you are a restaurant for pets or sell these types of items, just like human food, pet food may contain harmful bacteria (such as salmonella) or toxins (such as melamine). If pet food is not handled properly, both pets and humans may be at risk for foodborne illness.
Call us here at Texas Restaurant Equipment, together we can find options to secure your business with used restaurant equipment for the future.
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