This week, the likely culprit is papaya. But it’s been linked in the past to raw alfalfa sprouts and peanut butter.
While the number of E. coli infections have been cut in half over the last 15 years, cases of Salmonella infection remain steady.
Now, federal health officials are urging new prevention strategies to keep certain foods from being contaminated before and after they’re harvested. They’re calling for more and improved inspections, better safety standards for fruits and vegetables and better oversight of food production and serve facilities.
But what can we do at home?
The CDC recommends the following guidelines:
- Keep your kitchen clean. Wash your hands, cutting boards, utensils and countertops.
- Keep raw meats – including poultry and seafood – separated from foods that are ready to eat.
- Make sure foods are cooked properly. Use a food thermometer. Cook whole meats to 145 degrees, ground meats to 160 degrees and all poultry to 165 degrees. You can increase cooking by letting whole meats sit for three minutes before carving them.
- Keep your refrigerator below 40 degrees.
- If you suspect food poisoning, call your doctor. They should report cases to the local health department.
- Do not prepare food for other people if you have diarrhea or vomiting.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
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