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November 12 – Safe shopping for 2013 Australian Food Safety Week

Strathfield Council is encouraging locals to keep their cool at the shops as it marks 2013 Australian Food Safety Week from Monday 11 November.

Cr Daniel Bott, Mayor of Strathfield, said this year’s theme for Food Safety Week ‘Shopping Food Safety’ serves as an important reminder of the simple things people can do to reduce their risk of food poisoning.

“The NSW Food Authority and our own Environmental Health Officers ensure there is a high standard of food safety applied to food manufacturers and retailers in NSW, but consumers can do their bit to keep their food safe when grocery shopping,” Cr Bott said.

“I encourage people to put the NSW Food Authority’s handy hints into practice to help ensure the health and safety of themselves and their families.”

  • Clean – choose a clean trolley and if using reusable shopping bags make sure they’re clean, use separate, easily washable bags for meat & poultry and for fruit & vegetables
  • Choose – wisely; check for date marking, avoid damaged packaging, check the product has been corrected stored, and consider people you are buying for that may have special needs, such as allergies
  • Chill – buy non perishable food first, leave chilled and frozen food until the end of your shop, leave hot food like BBQ chicken until the end also
  • Separate – keep your hot food separate from your chilled items and avoid raw product coming into contact with other items
  • Storage – plan what you need in advance and make a shopping list to avoid overloading the fridge, pack chilled or frozen foods in an insulated cooler bag for the trip home and try to go directly home and unpack directly into your fridge or freezer, follow storage instructions on packaging

NSW Food Authority CEO Polly Bennett said the Authority has a number of initiatives in place that are designed to improve food safety standards and to reduce the incidence of foodborne illness in communities across NSW.

“This includes the Scores on Doors program that allows people to see how well a food business is complying with food safety and hygiene requirements by prominently displaying its rating on their front door,” Ms Bennett said.

“There is also the Food Safety Supervisor program that requires at least one hospitality or food retail service worker per business to be trained to implement safe food handling practice within the business.”

Further information about food safety and shopping can be found at the NSW Food Authority’s website