How a Food Handling Course can Protect You at Home

19 Oct

Taking a food handling course is a good way to inform yourself about proper food safety in your own home.  A lot of people take a food safety course because they are required to either by an employer or in order to become eligible for a particular job but it’s just as relevant for those not in the industry.  Proper food handling is a skill and knowledge set that everyone should possess.

Most people associate salmonella with raw chicken but according to the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) in the United States there are a whole host of products that have been related to salmonella outbreaks.  Some of the strangest ones are: peanut butter, papayas, cantaloupes, ground beef, dry dog food and alfalfa sprouts.  Typically people do not associate salmonella bacteria with the aforementioned products but year after year outbreaks of it are associated with non-poultry products.  Several outbreaks have also been attributed to live chickens, turkeys, ducklings, turtles and a species of African Dwarf Frogs.  While you can not anticipate where or how the bacteria will turn up, if you take a certified food handling course, you will learn how to treat all the food that comes into your home.

Some things that should become regular practice in the home are ensuring that all produce is washed thoroughly – even if the package claims that it has been pre-washed.  You should also maintain cutting boards according to the products you cut on them, have a separate board for poultry, produce and beef/pork products.  Color-coding your boards will help you to remember which one you should use for each product and you should avoid cutting any meats on a wooden board altogether.  Wood boards allow bacteria to settle into cracks and get absorbed into the board, plastic or glass boards are the best and easiest to disinfect – plastic boards can also be shaved down regularly to eliminate crevices created by knife cuts.  Taking a food handling course will also give you additional tips and ideas that you can implement in your home to prevent cross contamination and prevent your family from falling ill with food poisoning.

In a time when super-bacteria are becoming more and more prevalent, it’s important to take a food handling course to prevent cross-contamination.  While cooking most foods adequately will eliminate the bacteria, it’s the pre-cooking regiment that needs to be strictly controlled.  If you do become sick from salmonella there is a good chance that you will not find an adequate antibiotic to combat it as many strains of it have developed immunity to at least four of the six most common antibiotics given for it.  Some strains have proven to be immune to all antibiotics typically prescribed for its treatment so if are ill from salmonella you may be forced to just let it run its course.  Typically, in adults, this is not too much of a problem.  People with salmonella poisoning will usually be afflicted with gastric problems and vomiting for anywhere from twenty-four to seventy-two hours and then it’s over.  The big concern is if a child or senior becomes ill with it as it can cause severe dehydration which can be life-threatening for the elderly and infants.

This article was written by Ulrike Oleksy, on behalf of CFT QLD, offering online food handling courses for your convenience. To know how you can learn from online courses, you may also visit eHow.

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Posted by on October 19, 2012 in Education


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