Tip of the Week
Why is meat and poultry likely to be infected with Ecoli, Campylobacter and other bacteria now more than ever before?
Meat fraud and breaches of health and safety in meat processing plants are on the increase. Over the last 18 months, we have seen a sharp rise in prosecutions due to health and safety breaches in meat processing plants and butchers. Meat and poultry has been found to be overly contaminated with Ecoli and Campylobacter due to breaches in food safety during the processing procedures. Meat and poultry have been found to be relabelled as British when, in fact , it is imported and relabelled for a longer shelf life. This is resulting in some of the largest butchers closing. The main reason is the tighter margins from price competition.
For the chef, this means extra vigilance when handling and preparing raw meat and chicken.
Here are our top tips –
- Check the food temperature on delivery and reject if the meat or chicken is above 5°C (use an infrared thermometer)
- Put deliveries away within 20 minutes of food being delivered
- Clean and sanitise any worksurfaces that come into contact with the raw meat/chicken delivery, and wash hands
- Store raw meat and chicken at a maximum temperature of 5°C
- Use within manufacturers date but ideally use within a maximum 3 days of arriving in your kitchen
- Prepare raw meat and poultry separate from ready to eat foods
- Use separate equipment for raw and ready to eat foods
- Wash hands frequently (and after every task) using hot water and antibacterial soap
- Cook poultry and chopped meats to a minimum temperature of 75°C. If serving beef, lamb, venison, duck steaks rare, ensure you sear all outside surfaces
NEVER wash raw meat or poultry as this transfers the bacteria to the sink, taps, your hands, and can be a cause of cross contamination in your kitchen
Weekly Food Fact
Did you know that there are more chickens on earth than people!
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