King snapper at Stoney the Fishmonger for Easter, Tuesday, March 26, 2013. Photo Kevin Farmer / The Chronicle
King snapper at Stoney the Fishmonger for Easter, Tuesday, March 26, 2013. Photo Kevin Farmer / The Chronicle Kevin Farmer

'Clean, Choose, Chill and Separate' is motto for safety week

BUSINESSES, food operators and residents across the region are being reminded to shop safely as part of Australian Food Safety Week.

Rockhampton Regional Council Health and Compliance Committee Chair councillor Ellen Smith said council plays an important role is ensuring local businesses are aware of their food safety responsibilities.

"Our role is to ensure any food handling businesses know and understand their responsibilities when it comes to producing, supplying or selling food to our residents and visitors," Cr Smith said.

"We are legislated by strict food standards and we need to ensure any food operating business knows how to buy, store and cook, particularly when they are serving food to the public.

"This year, the main message for Australian Food Safety Week is to 'Clean, Choose, Chill and Separate' when selecting and transporting food home.

"We're reminding everyone that it really is their responsibility to check all food before purchasing and then ensure food remains safe during transport and storage after purchasing."

Tips for buying, transporting and storing food

  •  Do not purchase food if you see any signs of defects.
  •  Check packaging and cans for swelling and/or leakage, rust and scratches, broken tamper seals, dented or damaged containers, damaged seams, abrasions, blisters or wrinkles if the food is in sealed pouches.
  •  Check the use-by and best-before dates. It is illegal to sell food after the use by date.
  •  Pick up refrigerated and frozen food last when shopping and always take an insulated bag or cooler with you to transport cold food. Put into the refrigerator or freezer as soon as you get home.
  •  Store food according to instructions - Refrigerate after opening, Keep frozen or Refrigerate under 4°C must be followed or food poisoning bacteria will grow quickly.
  •  Follow the manufacturer's advice on temperature, cooking time, stirring and resting time to ensure food is safely cooked.

Food Safety Fact sheets are available this week at local supermarkets, via displays at Mount Morgan, Emu Park and Yeppoon libraries, and at Council's Customer Service Centres.

Australian Food Safety Week is the major activity of the Food Safety Information Council, Australia's leading disseminator of community targeted food safety information.

For more information, please go to www.rockhamptonregion.qld.gov.au, click on Council Services then Environment and Public Health then Food Businesses, or contact Council on 1300 22 55 77 for further information.
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