Prepare food and drink in ways that minimise risks to own safety and of others
Our hands are one of the main ways germs are spread, so it's important to wash them thoroughly with soap and warm water before cooking, after touching the bin, going to the toilet, and after touching raw food.
Raw meat, [ including poultry, can contain harmful bacteria that can spread easily to anything it touches. This includes other food, worktops, tables, chopping boards and
"Lots of people think they should wash raw chicken, but there's no need," says food hygiene expert Adam Hardgrave. "Any germs on it will be killed if you cook it thoroughly. In fact, if you do wash chicken you could splash germs on to the sink, worktop, dishes or anything else nearby."
Take particular care to keep raw food away from ready-to-eat foods such as bread, salad and fruit. These foods won't be cooked before you eat them so any germs that get on to them won't be killed.
"Use different chopping boards for raw and ready-to-eat foods," says Hardgrave.
When storing raw meat, always keep it in a clean, sealed container and place it on the bottom shelf of the fridge, where it can't touch or drip on to other foods.Cooking food at the right temperature will ensure that any harmful bacteria are killed. Check that food is piping hot throughout before you eat it.Washing fruit and vegetables
It's advisable to wash fruit and vegetables under cold running water before you eat them. This helps to remove visible dirt and germs that may be on the surface.
Peeling or cooking fruit and vegetables can also remove these germs.
Never use washing-up liquid or other household cleaning products, as they might not be safe for human consumption and you may accidentally leave some of the product on the food.
Wash all worktops and chopping boards before and after cooking, as they can be a source of cross-contamination.
The average kitchen chopping board has around 200% more faecal bacteria on it than the average toilet seat.
Damp sponges and cloths are the perfect place for bacteria to breed. Studies have shown the kitchen sponge to have the highest number of germs in the home. Wash and replace kitchen cloths, sponges and tea towels frequently. ]
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