Restaurant and other institutional
chefs, home cooks and anyone else
involved in the preparation of food
must be vigilant in their war on the
bacteria that cause food poisoning.
And all eaters must be aware of
potential problems. Unfortunately,
bacteria can contaminate food
without making their presence known
— until it's too late.
Campylobacter I can cause severe
Jejuni gastrointestinal upset that lasts a
week or more. I like to stay in raw
poultry and meat, unpasteurized
Preventives: Use pasteurized
milk only; cook poultry well done
and red meat until it shows the
merest tinge of pink in the
center (160°F. on a meat
thermometer). Hamburger and
meat loaves should be brown
clear through. Also, keep
counters, cutting boards and
implements scrupulously clean,
and wash hands well after
handling raw meat or poultry.
The bacterium itself doesn't kill,
but the toxin it produces causes
the deadly botulism
Bacterial source: Improperly canned low-acid
foods (soups; vegetables such as peas, beans
and corn; ripe olives; tuna; liver pâté), also
hams, luncheon meats, shellfish, sausage,
smoked and salted fish.
Preventives:If you doubt the safety of a particular
food or can of food, get rid of it immediately
Call me cafeteria bug, I am
responsible for about 10
percent of all cases of food
I like to stay in perishable
foods, especially large
batches of meat or poultry
left at room temperature for
longer than two hours.
Preventives: Keep cold foods cold and
hot foods hot. When refrigerating large
batches of hot food, divide among small
containers so the food will chill fast.
The culprit behind a hemorrhagic form
of food poisoning that began appearing
in the early 1980s
Bacterial source: Unpasteurized milk, undercooked
meats(particularly hamburgers and all-beef hotdogs).
Preventives: Handle raw meats carefully and cook
Bacterial source: Raw or undercooked poultry and eggs;
raw milk and dairy products; raw or undercooked meats
and shrimp; and, finally, untidy cooking procedures.
Preventives: Rinse poultry, meat and shrimp well in cold water
before you cook them. Cook meat to an internal temperature
of 160°F. or more.
The medical name for
the dysentery this
pathogen causes is
Bacterial source: Dairy
products; poultry; potato, pasta Preventives: Keeping
and other bland salads. the cook and kitchen
Contaminated by careless squeaky clean; also
cooks or handlers, food, if not refrigerating all
refrigerated, allows shigella to perishables promptly
grow, and outbreaks of and properly.
shigellosis will surely follow.
The " turista bug" that so often plagues travelers
Bacterial source: Preventives:
Meats, poultry, Keep hot foods
egg products, hissing hot, cold
cream-filled cakes foods icy cold.
and pastries, Also, thaw
gelatins, cream frozen food in
sauces, creamed the refrigerator,
foods and bland never at room
salads that are temperature.
allowed to stand Finally,
too long at room refrigerate
temperature leftovers ASAP.
What it is: This microbe lives
in coastal waters and in warm
weather can infect seafood
People at greatest risk are
those with weakened immune
systems, scanty stomach acid
or liver problems.
The best preventive? Avoid
raw fish or shellfish taken in
summer from shallow inshore
► The first step in preventing food poisoning is to assume
that all foods may cause food-borne illness. Follow these
steps to prevent food poisoning:
► Wash hands, food preparation surfaces and utensils
thoroughly before and after handling raw foods to
prevent recontamination of cooked foods.
► Keep refrigerated foods below 10 degrees C.
► Serve hot foods immediately or keep them heated above
65 degrees C.
► Divide large volumes of food into small portions for rapid
cooling in the refrigerator. Hot, bulky foods in the
refrigerator can raise the temperature of foods already
► Remember the danger zone is between 10 degrees C
and 65 degrees C.
► Follow approved home-canning procedures.
► When in doubt, throw it out