Food safety, handling and hygiene recommendations

Hereby some food safety, handling for cooling and freezing

 

Buying meat:

    • Keep in mind expiration from pick up date: 5 Days at +4⁰C in the refrigerator or 3 Months at -15⁰C in the freezer.
    • Put the meat in the fridge when you receive it at home.
    • Beef not exposed to oxygen (in its vacuum packaging) is a burgundy or purplish colour. After exposure to the air for 15 minutes or so, the meat turns bright, cherry red due to contact with oxygen.

Storing the meat in the fridge or freezer:

    • Keep the beef in its package until using it.
    • To store meats in the freezer: you can freeze it in its original vacuum package unopened. If you want to store part of the meat, remove the original package first.  When packaging meats for the freezer, the most important thing is to protect them from exposure to air. Wrap meats very tightly in either plastic wrap or freezer paper, pressing the wrapping right up against the surface of the meat. Next, wrap another layer of aluminium foil around the meat or seal it inside a zip-top freezer bag.
    • Always label it with the date you are storing it.
    • Don’t store raw meat in the fridge without the original packaging longer than 3 days. If you do, use sealed and cleaned containers on the bottom shelf of the fridge, so that, it can’t touch or drip other food; also, the bottom of the fridge is normally at a lower temperature than the top shelf.
    • Keep cooked meat separate from raw meat.
    • Beef that has turned brown during extended storage may be spoiled, have an off-odour, and be tacky to the touch. In any of these cases never eat the meat.

Preparing meat:

    • Wash your hands before and after manipulating the meat. Use warm soapy water.
    • Always throw the wrapping in the bin immediately.
    • Clean any surfaces and utensils that come into contact with the meat.
    • Never use same utensils or trays for both raw vegetables and meat. Cross-contamination can occur if raw meat or its juices contact cooked food or foods that will be eaten raw, such as salad.
    • Defrost: When you want to use the meat, the best and safest way to thaw meat is to place the frozen package in the refrigerator and let it thaw gradually. Small cuts will thaw this way in about 24 hours while larger cuts can take a few days. If you’re rushed for time, small cuts can also be thawed in a bowl with lukewarm water under running water.
    • Do not re-freeze raw meat.

Cleaning up:

    • Use hot soapy water.
    • Always wash surfaces and utensils thoroughly after they have been in contact with raw meat.
    • If you’ve used a dishcloth to wipe up after raw meat then you should replace it immediately with a clean one.
    • Wash your hands thoroughly after handling raw meat, using warm, soapy water.

FOOD SAFETY IS EVERYBODY’S BUSINESS