21 Dec 2020

Clean, cook and chill to decrease risk of food poisoning

11:57 am on 21 December 2020

As the festive season kicks off, people are being reminded of the increased risk of food poisoning at home.

Grilled skewers of vegetables and meat on the Table

Photo: 123rf

The Ministry for Primary Industries has launched a food safety campaign reminding everyone to "Clean Cook, and Chill".

Food Safety Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall said with rising summer temperatures, the risk of food poisoning increased.

"Food poisoning is a significant issue in New Zealand with an estimated 100,000 people getting sick from unsafe food handling practices at home.

"That's why the Ministry for Primary Industries is launching an awareness campaign, reminding consumers to follow the 3 C's: clean, cook and chill, when handling, cooking and storing raw meats such as poultry, to avoid getting sick and paying the price," she said.

MPI has also teamed up with MasterChef winning sisters Karena and Kasey Bird to offer additional advice and helpful cooking tips on social media this summer.

Verrall said a recent study found that most New Zealanders don't believe that food poisoning can be deadly or create long-term health consequences.

She said while for many, food poisoning will just mean a few days of an upset stomach, for others it can be more serious.

"Some people can and do experience more severe forms of foodborne illnesses as a result of picking up harmful bacteria and viruses like Campylobacter, Norovirus, Salmonella, Listeria, Escherichia coli (E. coli) and Bacillus cereus.

"This is especially true for young tamariki, our elderly community, pregnant mothers and Kiwis who suffer from other health issues," she said.