Food Safety Chit-Chat

Discussion in 'Food Safety' started by jp61, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. Follow
  2. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Lots of talk about cooking temps, time, IT (internal temps), minimum safe temps, types of bacterium, toxins, etc., with good reason.

    Let's not forget about proper handling of  food after it is cooked/smoked.

    One of the most common causes of food-borne illness is improper cooling of cooked foods

    Bacteria are everywhere, even after food is cooked to a safe internal temperature, they can be reintroduced to food and then reproduce.

    Some basic helpful information to keep in mind and practice

    According to food microbiologists: 

    - Hot food serving temp should be 140°F or above

    - Cold food serving temp should be 40°F or bellow

    - Discard any food left out at room temperature for more than 2 hours

    - Discard any food left out for 1 hour, if temperature was over 90°F

    - Place food into shallow containers and put in fridge or freezer for rapid cooling

    - Fridge temperature should be 40°F or bellow

    - Freezer temperature should be 0°F or bellow

    - Use most cooked leftovers within 3 to 4 days, unless freezing

    - Reheat leftovers to 165 °F


    Any mistake(s) on my part, please point them out for correction. Thanks
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
  3. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Food Cross-Contamination

    What is it?

    Possible transfer of harmful bacteria to raw or cooked food from:

    - Raw food (meat, poultry or seafood)

    - Utensils

    - Cutting boards

    - Counter top

    - Kitchen sink

    - Hands

    - Etc.

    At the store

    - Many if not all stores provide plastic bags but, some (many) people don't use them

    - Packaging of raw foods (meat, poultry and seafood) can leak fluids that may contain harmful bacteria 

    - Should always keep them separated from other items in shopping cart and put in dedicated bags at the check-out

    - At the check-out fluids may leak out and on to conveyor belts prior to your arrival and are not always promptly cleaned up

    - These fluids may contaminate any items you place on the conveyor

    At home

    - Place raw meat, poultry or seafood in containers or sealed plastic bags prior to refrigeration in order to prevent their juices from dripping onto other foods

    - Clean up any fluids that may have leaked out with hot soapy paper towels 

    - Washing raw meat, poultry or seafood in the sink may contaminate surrounding area and items

    - Wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds

    Wash cutting boards, dishes, and counter tops with hot soapy water after preparing each food item and before you go on to the next item

    - Do not  place cooked food back on the same plate or cutting board that previously held raw food

    - Do not contaminate immediate atmosphere unless a loved one pulls your finger on request

    Cutting boards

    - Always use a clean board

    - If possible use dedicated boards for raw meat, poultry or seafood

    - If cutting board went through hell and back consider replacing it

    - A solution of 1 tablespoon of unscented liquid chlorine bleach per gallon of water may be used to sanitize surfaces and utensils

    These are some recommendations  from people smarter than I am, to keep in mind and practice, in order to keep them little bastards at bay. [​IMG]

    Any mistake(s) on my part, please point them out for correction. Thanks

    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
  4. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Please don't misinterpret my intentions here with this thread or my posts within. I do not belong to or work for the food  [​IMG]  

    I'm just trying to shine a light on what I feel is a very important topic for everyone in a seemingly inactive forum. In the process I'm learning a thing or two myself and hopefully others will too.


    Don't be shy, jump right in! There's no physical bacteria involved in this process other than the ones on your keyboard [​IMG]

    This ought to go over like a lead balloon........ lol
  5. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Basic food safety has to be taught to everyone that visits your kitchen during food prep.  I can't tell you how often someone uses a towel to wipe up spilled chicken water then uses the same towel to dry their hands after washing them.

    At Sams one morning I saw one of the sample servers remove an obviously used paper towel from her top pocket, blow her nose and stuff it back in her pocket.  Not one time changing her serving gloves.   Or how about the deli counter girl that uses her serving gloves to operate the cash register and handle cash?   Or how about the sandwich preparer that uses her chef's knife to scratch her back? 

    Fortunately most of us are healthy enough that small amounts of bad stuff won't make us sick but as I get older I am more and more aware of what others do that may make me sick.  My FIL once served turkey stuffed with oyster dressing,  looked great on the outside but the dressing was still cool and soaked in turkey blood.

    How often have you eaten at a local restaurant only to find that the health department closed it down shortly afterward?

    Too bad the health department doesn't require all kitchens to be open to the public a quick look or smell will tell you if they keep it clean.

    We should all probably post a link to this thread in the other forums we visit.
  6. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    "or how about the sandwich preparer that uses her chef's knife to scratch her back? "  [​IMG]   [​IMG]

    Yeah, I'm sure most of us have witnessed conditions or incidents that would make a person scratch his or her head in disbelief.

    As a teenager, one of the places I worked before joining the Marines was a fancy seafood restaurant. A very popular place at the time with ice sculptures every weekend. We were allowed to have a cheeseburger or something along those lines for lunch. One day I walked up to a line cook and asked if he'd make be a cheeseburger. Being a nice guy, he asked if I wanted a steak instead and proceeded to pull out the steak drawer. I don't remember now if I ended up eating one or not but, do remember seeing two big cockroaches crawling on the raw meat.

    A certain sub-sandwich place I use to frequent finally turned me away after not feeling well a few times seemingly after I've eaten from there. One thing I found nasty was the knife they used to cut the sandwich with. It was always pulled from what I called the scrap-food trough which probably didn't get cleaned until after closing.

    Haven't visited in years a certain taco joint after my son and I witnessed what their prep area looked like.
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
  7. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★


    ... and, I also remember when I was still a dishwasher using my lighter and can of stainless steel cleaner as a flame thrower to zap cockroaches crawling on the walls, lol. Though they had an exterminator come on a regular basis, they still had an issue.
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
  8. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Some Basics of the Parallel Microworld 

    - Bacteria

    - Viruses

    - Parasites

    - Fungi

    Microbes Found:


    Staphylococcus aureus

    - Shigella
    - Hepatitis A

    - Norovirus


    - Salmonella
    - E. coli 0157:H7
    - Parasites

    - Clostridium botulinum
    - Clostridium perfringens



    - Aid in digestion

    - Food industry


    - Affects odor, taste and texture



    Any disease-producing agent

    Needs for growth

    - Nutrients
    - pH
    - Time
    - Temperature
    - +/- Oxygen
    - Water Activity

    Bacterial Spores

    - Can survive cooking and freezing temperatures

    - Can survive disinfection


    - Few are destroyed by heat

    Control of Environment 

    - Curing
    - Acidifying
    - Vacuum packaging
    - Dehydrating
    - Freezing
    - Water activity
    - pH
    - Air
    - Temperature


    - Exist only to replicate

    - Need a host 

    Infect all types of cells
    - Bacteria
    - Fungi
    - Plants
    - Animals

    - Soil
    - Water
    - Air


    - Yeasts

    - Molds

    - Beneficial

    - Spoilage

    - Some are pathogenic

    - Reproduce via spores


    - Need a host

    - Nourishment
    - Protection
    - Complete life cycle

    - Soil
    - Water
    - Air
    - Animals 

    Acquired via contaminated

    - Food
    - Water

    - Contact with a contaminated source

    Any mistake(s) on my part, please point them out for correction. Thanks
  9. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Basic Food Safety Videos

    Produced by the Central District Health Department

    Boise, ID

    Uploaded July 13, 2007

    All six videos in total are 29:16 in length

    If interested, watch them in sequence otherwise they get out of order for some reason

    Found them to be well made

    If you find any inaccurate information please point it out so it can be corrected. Thanks

    Note: In video #4 the second temperature he mentions is 155°F, it should be 160°F 

    Videos 1 & 2


    Videos 3 & 4


    Videos 5 & 6


    Recommended Internal Temperatures * 
    Ground Meat & Meat Mixtures
    Beef, Pork, Veal, Lamb160
    Turkey, Chicken165
    Fresh Beef, Pork, Veal, Lamb
    Beef, Pork, Veal, & Lamb (steaks, roasts and chops)145**
    **as measured with a food thermometer before removing meat from the heat source. For safety and quality, allow meat to rest for at least three minutes before carving or consuming. For reasons of personal preference, consumers may choose to cook meat to higher temperatures.
    Fresh (raw) or “cook-before-eating”145**
    Pre-cooked (to reheat)140
    Chicken, Turkey, Duck & Goose (whole or pieces)165
    Poultry breasts, roasts165
    Stuffing (cooked alone or in bird)165
    Eggs and Egg Dishes
    EggsCook until yolk and white are firm
    Egg dishes160
    Leftovers and Casseroles165

    *These temperatures are recommended for consumer cooking. They are not intended for processing, institutional, or foodservice preparation. Food service professionals should consult their state or local food code.
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
  10. deansomers

    deansomers Smoke Blower

    Lets make this CLEAR! I was NOT responding with a negative attitude! I was offering threads that had the same type of info in them. Every other forum I am on tries 2 keep from having lots of similar threads so I thought I was being helpful. I see now this thread is different. I couldn't possibly care any less if you liked my post this isn't facebook. I was just trying 2 be helpful & show the op some threads that had that info.
  11. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    This forum tends to be pretty talkative and we try to engage people in responding to and creating new threads.   If all people need to do is retrieve information I suggest they use Google, its faster  If members want to learn or share or talk about why we do things the way we do, this is a good place to be.   Please continue to post links to relevant threads but please don't do that in lieu of contributing fresh commentary to the existing thread.

    If all we did was rely on links there would be no arguing, no new information and worst of all no new Qview!  And everyone likes looking at fresh Qview!
  12. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Three weeks ago I was eating in a restaurant in Canterbury where the kitchen area was visible to the diners.  The general hygiene methods were generally excellent but even here things can go wrong so easily. Two of the staff were portioning raw chicken obviously taking great pains to following their HACCP procedures - except for one small thing...  One of the kitchen staff was drinking a cup of coffee while he was handling the chicken - they then scrubbed, changed jackets and put on fresh gloves to began preparing green leaf salads - Unfortunately whilst he continued drinking from the the same mug of coffee. I felt a right pain in the backside when I pointed this out to the chef but my salad was one of the ones being prepared! To be fair the response was immediate and all of that batch of salad was immediately binned and I received a written apology a couple of days later. It just goes to show though that a moment of lapsed concentration is all that it takes.
  13. davidhef88

    davidhef88 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  14. Wow... Over-react much? Guy simply said why he linked to those threads that you didn't like. No need to attack him & call his post BS - this has always been a place free of that kind of drama & this thread has the ability to help lots of people.

    Not trying to start an argument by any means but please try to restrain your anger in public - take it to a PM...
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
  15. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Why is it that, when it comes to poultry the minimum  IT (internal temp) of 165°F is safe for both ground and whole/pieces? 
  16. It's because there is generally more contamination than on red meat. With something such as beef the animal is skinned right away - with poultry the skin (which can harbor bacteria from feces on the farm) is usually left on until they go through further processing. So there is more opportunity for the bugs to not get cleaned off. Chicken also has more nooks and crannies where bugs can hide - wings, legs, body cavity etc... There's more surface area relative to total meat. There is also the guts (gastro intestinal tract) It's a microbiological superhighway for pathogens. It's size relative to flesh is greater for a bird than a cow or other animal so more intestine to flesh means more chance that during the gutting the contents might get on the bird and the workspace is so much smaller on a bird that it's a lot harder to do this cleanly.

    Basically processing is more invasive & bacteria is usually spread throughout the bird...

    This is how it has always been explained to me at least...
  17. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Reasons why I would expect ground poultry recommended safe temps to be higher than whole bird. The same as with beef......145° for whole and 160° for ground.
  18. It doesn't need to be higher for ground poultry because the recommended temp for whole bird is already 165 - no need to go a lot higher to kill the nasties if you grind it up since you are already hot enough...

    I hope that makes sense.
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
  19. jp61

    jp61 Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    [​IMG]  Yes and no. Why wouldn't that also be true than in the case of beef or pork?
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
  20. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    As was mentioned previously the processing methods used in poultry tend to be more invasive than for beef and pork and therefore the recommended cooking temperature already treats it as if it is ground. If you grind Beef or pork then the same is true and you also need to ensure that the "surfaces" in the centre of the patty or sausage all reach the required temperature.

    With a solid lump of beef/pork however the outside "contaminated" surface will quickly reach the required temperature as the oven will be significantly hotter - whilst the "uncontaminated" centre does not need to.

    That does raise the question of how do you actually measure the centre temperature of the Beef or Pork when using an internal probe without actually contaminating it? 

Share This Page