Learning the basics of food handling safety is an important issue for anyone who handles food in any capacity. From the home chef who cooks only for his family, to the professional chef who is responsible for preparing four course meals on a daily basis, to everyone in between, food handling safety is something that must be learned, as well as practiced, each and every time the kitchen is entered. To not do so can result in accidents, injuries, illness, or even worse.
One of the cardinal rules of food handling safety is to always wash hands. Most people know they should always wash their hands when they are first beginning to prepare food in the kitchen. Washing their hands, as well as their forearms, thoroughly with plenty of soap and water will help make sure the meal get off to a good start.
Other times when hands should be washed in order to make food handling safety the number one priority is when a meal requires handling both raw meat and other types of foods. Because raw meat contains bacteria that can cause illnesses when eaten or when it comes in contact with uncooked foods, it is important to make sure to wash hands after handling raw meats and before handling other foods. The presence of these bacteria are also the reason why it is important to make sure that all meats are cooked to the correct internal temperature.
Keeping foods at the appropriate temperatures is necessary when thinking about food handling safety. Hot foods should be kept at a suitable temperature that ensures that they do not get too cool while cold foods should not be allowed to reach room temperature. Foods should not be kept at room temperature for longer than two hours before they are refrigerated as this can lead to the formation of harmful bacteria.