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Food - hygiene and sanitation
Alternative namesFood safety refers to the conditions and practices that preserve the quality of food to prevent contamination and food-borne illnesses.
Proper handling and preparation of food greatly reduces the risks of getting foodborne illnesses. Food can be contaminated in many different ways -- during the packaging process, by inadequate cooking or storage.
Different food products may already have different microorganisms such as bacteria or parasites which may be allowed to multiply and cause disease if food is not appropriately handled.
Food SourcesAll foods are affected by hygiene and sanitation measures. Higher risk foods include red meats and poultry; eggs; cheese and dairy products; raw sprouts; and raw fish or shellfish.
Side EffectsThe main consequence of improper handling and inadequate food safety is infection (foodborne illness), which may be severe and life-threatening especially in young children, older adults, pregnant women, and persons with weakened immune systems.
Update Date: 8/15/2003Daniel Levy, M.D., Ph.D., Infectious Diseases, Greater Baltimore Medical Center, Baltimore, MD. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT