Stay food safe this Christmas with TCC tips

Date published: 22 December 2023

Make sure you’re having a safe and healthy Christmas by following food safety guidelines this festive season.

Members of your family may be more at risk if they get food poisoning, including babies and children, the elderly, pregnant people and people with low immune systems.

Community Health, Safety and Environmental Sustainability Committee chairperson Maurie Soars said it was essential to practice safe food handling during Christmas.

“Practicing good food handling can help keep your family and friends happy and healthy this Christmas season,” Cr Soars said.

“If you’re eating meat or poultry, make sure it’s cooked all the way through to an internal temperature of at least 75C to destroy bacteria.

“Your food prep and leftovers need to be prepared properly, so make sure your hot foods are reheated to above 60C and your cold foods are chilled below 5C.

“The way you store your food is important to help avoid food poisoning. When you store your cooked food, make sure it’s cooled down and placed in covered containers before putting it in your fridge. Your cooked food should be stored on a higher shelf in the fridge, while raw food including meats, poultry and seafood should be kept on lower shelves.

“Charcuterie boards can’t be left out in the heat for more than two hours before they need to be replaced with fresh food. This includes food like cold meats, soft cheeses, prawns, dips and salads, so serve a small amount at a time and bring out fresh items from the fridge as needed.

“Make sure you don’t over-pack your fridge as this can cause cross-contamination and prevent cold air from circulating. If you need to, move some of your drinks to an ice-filled esky or sink to free up some fridge space.”