|With summer’s arrival, we begin our traditional warm-weather activities ‘the beach, backyard barbecues’ and foodborne illness. Yes, foodborne illness. Summer is prime time for food “poisoning.” An assessment of risk recently issued in draft form by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) reports that the risk of foodborne illness from E. coli may be three times greater during the summer than the rest of the year. A possible reason, says FSIS, is that E. coli infection of cattle increases during the summer, resulting in the possibility of more beef at the store harboring the potentially fatal H7:O157 form of the bacteria. But consumers compound the problem by not handling foods safely.
The Statistics Will Turn Your Stomach. Think it couldn’t happen at your house? Think again. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that a staggering 76 million people contract foodborne illness each year. Most likely to get sick? Those with poorly developed or weakened immune systems, such as infants, young children, the elderly and those who are pregnant, undergoing cancer treatment or have diabetes, kidney disease or AIDS.
This season, whether dining al fresco or indoors, make food safety a priority.
First and Foremost, Cleanliness:
Prepare with Care:
Cook Foods Adequately:
145-Beef, lamb and veal steaks and roasts, medium-rare.
Serve With Safety in Mind: