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Lunch time food safety

July 11, 2014

A recent survey conducted through the Home Food Safety Program by ConAgra’s Foods’ discovered that approximately 83% of people eat snacks and lunch at their work desk on a somewhat regular basis. If you make up a part of this percentage, then it is crucial you know how to ensure your mealtime remains safe and germ-free.

Handling food safely

Before you start handling food products, it is important to make sure that your hands have been thoroughly washed and cleaned. Although your office may look clean, in all likelihood, it’s probably full of microscopic germs.

If you are bringing lunch from home, ensure that it is placed within the office fridge as soon as you arrive, or within two hours of arrival. Also, be careful that you do not leave leftovers to sit without proper refrigeration for longer than two hours if you plan to eat them later.

Be sure to thaw any frozen foods in the refrigerator, rather than simply leaving them on a countertop. If you use a regular lunch box, or reusable bag to bring your lunch to work, ensure that it is thoroughly and regularly cleaned to prevent the build-up of bacteria. Finally, remember that food safety standards also apply to fast-food and take-out items.

Items to have on hand

If you regularly eat at your office or desk, then it’s a good idea to keep certain critical items on hand throughout the day. For example, always keep a supply of cleansing wipes nearby to wipe down your desk, as well as hand sanitiser to keep your hands free from germs.

It’s also worth investing in items designed for the purpose of keeping your food safe. For example, keep a thermometer in your office fridge to make sure it’s temperature is adequate for storing food. You could also use a thermometer to ensure the internal temperature of re-heated foods is high enough to prevent the growth or spread of bacteria.