Part of the Christmas festivity is to attend to a number of gifts and foods that are shared by family and friends. Attending to this task is not a joke. This can be very challenging and improper care can sometimes lead to health risks.
To face this challenge, gifts that are considered perishable should first be attended to. These gifts are usually packed in well crafted food hampers to preserve the quality of the items inside.
If you are the food preparer, you have to strictly adhere to food safety prior to the festivity. Take note that safe food handling practices not only extend the quality of food, they can help save lives as well.
Follow these ten simple food hampers and food handling practices:
1. Right temperature for food should always be considered. Hot food should have their own place to preserve, same with cold foods. This way, the growth of bacteria is reduce, aroma, appearance and food texture is enhance.
2. Gifts that are marked “keep refrigerated” or “keep frozen” should arrive in good condition. Visible ice crystals, or still cold when touch should be checked. Do not consume them when already warm.
3. Use nutritious food all the time. Consume them while still fresh. If not, have them stored for long term using the right temperature and storage area. Once decay is found, discard the food immediately.
4. Don’t take chances for partially cooked food. They allow bacteria to quickly grow. Food bacteria is hard to eliminate no matter how you cook the food.
5. Running water is best to thaw perishable foods, like meat. If thawed in microwave, cooked them immediately.
6. Do not engage in family feuds. This often result to unsafe food preparation. Be ready to set a strict guideline for food handling practices. A simple discussion like keeping the hands clean, storing leftovers in their proper storage areas and everything that has something to do with food safety should be discussed.
7. Always wear appropriate clothing when hosting a community dinner. Remember that people who attend the dinner vary by age. For the elderly, you have to consider their weakening health. Same consideration for the very young diners. Use disposable plastic gloves and change them often.
8. The 'farm-to-the-table' approach is another good way to practice safe handling of food. The food preparer should know about this and apply the method with diligence.
9. Don't in any way use mishandled food. Throw them away. You don’t want to frequently call your doctor for appointment, would you? 'When in doubt, throw it out.'
10. Proper handling of food can save money. Remember, not millions but billions of dollars are spent in health care, but still food-borne illness continues to be a threat to health and safety.
Simple hand washing before preparing food is a good example of safe food handling. This process often results to your family and friends to be highly aware of the importance of safety food handling.
Planning to give food as gift? Visit your favorite gift hampers shop for safe and healthy prepared food hampers.