Alberta Health Services (Black Press File Image)

AHS: Albertans reminded to be food safe this holiday season

Important to wash your hands often and prepare foods properly to reduce risk of food-borne illness

Whether you’re baking goodies or preparing a family feast, it’s important to wash your hands often and prepare foods properly to reduce the risk of food-borne illness.

Food-borne illness — commonly known as food poisoning — is caused by eating food contaminated with certain bacteria, viruses or parasites. Examples of disease-causing organisms include salmonella, E. coli and Listeria.

These bacteria are sometimes found in:

  • Raw and undercooked meat, poultry, fish and their juices.
  • Unpasteurized (raw) milk and (raw) milk products, such as soft and semi-soft cheeses made from unpasteurized milk.
  • Raw and lightly cooked eggs.
  • Uncooked flour and uncooked products made with flour, such as dough.

As many of these foods are often part of holiday menus, Albertans are encouraged to take extra care when preparing, cooking, serving and storing food:

  • Keep hot foods hot (60 C or above) and cold foods cold (4 C or below).
  • Never leave meat, poultry, eggs, fish or shellfish (raw or cooked) at room temperature for more than two hours.
  • Do not reheat food that has been left out at room temperature for more than two hours. Reheating does not make it safe.
  • Chill leftovers as soon as you finish eating.
  • Store leftovers in small, shallow containers to cool rapidly.

Additionally, there’s an increase of home-prepared foods being offered for sale at this time of year. This includes home-baked goods (cookies, squares, muffins, cakes, pies, etc.), beef jerky, cabbage rolls and perogies.

Alberta’s Food Regulation stipulates all food prepared, served or sold to the public must be from an approved facility. The only exception is food sold at Alberta-approved farmers’ markets. The Food Regulation enables people to distribute homemade, low-risk foods from farmers’ markets or community organization functions when safe food-handling practices are followed.

The only way to ensure proper food handling and preparation procedures have been followed is to purchase goods from AHS-approved businesses. Buyers are encouraged to ask to see a copy of the seller’s food-handling permit. Anyone with questions or complaints about the sale of home-prepared goods is asked to call their local Environmental Public Health Office.

For more information on food safety, health enforcement orders, starting and operating a food business in your home, including necessary forms, permits and a list of all AHS Environmental Public Health Offices, visit https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/EPH/EPH.aspx.

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.

-Submitted by Alberta Health Services

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

AA Lacombe Generals win 6-4 blockbuster against Daysland

Five unanswered goals including a penalty shot puts Gens’ ahead

‘Elder in the Making’ Herr Lecture in Lacombe brings light to Treaty 7

Documentary film/interactive talk highlights relationship between Blackfoot elder, Chinese newcomer

Lacombe County, Clearwater County sign Intermunicipal Collaboration Framework

ICF specifies what and how services are funded and delivered

Night Among the Stars supports Lacombe Big Brothers Big Sisters

Dancing competition bring together local celebrities, professional dancers for celebration, gala

Wolf Creek Public Schools’ buses are cancelled and schools are closed

High schools will remain open only for students writing diploma exams

Canada to bolster screening of central China passengers for virus at 3 airports

Additional measures will include messaging on arrivals screens in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver

Rebels fight back from 3-1 Raider lead to win 4-3 in shootout

Two goals by Zak Smith key to Rebels comeback

PHOTOS: Eastern Newfoundland reeling, search underway for missing man after blizzard

More than 70 centimetres of new snow fell overnight, creating whiteout conditions

Prince Harry, Meghan to give up ‘royal highness’ titles

‘Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family,’ says Queen Elizabeth II

RCMP Major Crimes Unit lays charges in Stettler death

Nicholas Climb Johnson, 32, of Stettler is charged with second degree murder in the death of his father

Metis nations ask Ottawa to negotiate directly with them, not national body

Three provincial Metis nations will work through the national council until after the federal government releases its 2020 budget

Canada to give $25,000 to families of each Canadian who died in Iran plane crash

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also made it clear that Canada still expects Iran to compensate victims

Oil and gas industry applauds top court’s dismissal of B.C.’s Trans Mountain case

The high court’s ruling Thursday removes one of the remaining obstacles for the project

Sylvan Lake RCMP seek assistance in locating missing male

Mark Crier, 17, was last seen in Sylvan Lake on Jan. 13

Most Read