PHOENIX, Nov. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- This Thanksgiving many families will gather around the emergency room because their dinners were not properly prepared.
"Nothing is harder – or potentially deadlier – to cook than a turkey. That's because so few of us cook a turkey more than once a year," said Bart Christian, president of Southwest Training Systems, the leader in the southwestern United States in food safety verification and education. Bart has spoken to thousands of food service staff on topics of leadership, communication, sanitation and safety.
He is available to reporters for talk radio shows or interviews for TV, newspapers or blogs by contacting him at 520-744-1092, toll free 1-888-838-1550 or Email.
"As friends and family gather together during the holiday season you want to make sure that you keep out any unwelcome guests in the form of harmful food borne bacteria. The following simple tips will ensure food safety and a great time for everyone at your table," said Christian, the trusted and reliable source for food safety. He's been a featured speaker multiple times at the School Nutrition Association's Annual National Conference as well as more than 100 school districts nationally.
Here are tips from the food safety guide:
- Wash your hands and clean all prep surfaces and tools regularly during food preparation. Bacteria can survive in many places around your kitchen, especially on your hands, utensils and cutting boards. Unless you wash your hands, utensils and surfaces the right way, you could spread bacteria to your food and your family.
- Soiled cloths are a hot breeding ground for bacteria. Wash them in the hot water cycle of your washing machine.
- Keep raw foods and ready-to-eat foods separate. Raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs can still spread illness-causing bacteria to ready-to-eat foods unless you keep them separate. When juices from raw meats or bacteria from unclean objects accidentally touch cooked or ready-to-eat foods like salads, bread or cooked vegetables, cross contamination can occur.
- When shopping keep raw meats away from other foods in your shopping cart and in grocery bags.
- Use separate tools and utensils. Never use the same utensils, cutting boards or containers for ready-to-eat foods that were previously used for handling raw meat, poultry or fish.
- Keep hot food "hot" and cold food "cold." Use a properly calibrated food thermometer to be sure. Cooking foods to a proper minimum internal temperature kills harmful pathogens. Many people think they can tell when food is "done" simply by checking its color and texture, but there's no way to be sure it's safe without following a few simple steps. Don't rely on sight or taste alone, a food thermometer is the only reliable way to determine the doneness of cooked foods, from pork and chicken to egg dishes, stuffing, microwave meals and leftovers.
- Always check the food temperature in the thickest part of the roast or turkey and check in two or three different spots for a rice dish or casserole.
- Refrigerate leftovers quickly after serving to prevent bacteria growth and potential food poisoning.
- Perishable foods cannot be left at out for longer than two hours at room temperature - or one hour if the temperature is above 90°F.
- NEVER marinate or thaw foods on the counter at room temperature. These should be done in the refrigerator or in some other safe manner.
About Bart Christian, Food Safety Speaker
Bart's southern style and subtle humor combined with real world content, enthusiasm, passion and energy with the purpose of making a positive difference in others' lives have made him a favorite among many organizations. Being from a small town in Georgia and becoming a self-made success has given Bart a real world perspective that relates to all staff levels.
His talks take the audience from understanding themselves to understanding others. They will learn how to use these skills to become a more effective communicator and to better deal with conflict and difficult people.
Audiences will discover, as Bart has, that their quality of life is a direct result of their communication and relations with others. Attendees will come away with simple tools that anyone can use and are proven to work in the real world.
SOURCE Bart Christian