Get your turkey ready for ‘National Defrost Your Turkey Day’

​Date: 17/12/2014

To help people stay safe during this festive season Wakefield Council will be supporting the Food Standards Agency (FSA) on National Defrost Your Turkey Day on Monday 22 December 2014. This day will prompt Christmas cooks to start thinking of the defrosting process in plenty of time and avoid getting caught out. A typical large turkey can take two days to defrost.

Only one in four people get it right by defrosting their turkey in the fridge. The Food Standard Agency is concerned that many risk getting an unwelcome gift of food poisoning this Christmas. Incorrect thawing provides a platform for bacteria such as campylobacter to spread, leaving you with a turkey dinner that looks and tastes delicious but contains a hidden risk that can't be seen, tasted or smelled, but can ruin your new year.

From late December 2013 to the start of January 2014 more than 3,000 cases of campylobacter were confirmed in England and Wales – an indication that more care needs to be given to the preparation, storage and consumption of turkey in the home during the festive period.

Cllr Maureen Cummings, Cabinet Member for Environment and Communities said: "It is really important to remind everyone to take plenty of time to cook your Christmas dinner and make sure you don't get any nasty surprises like food poisoning over the festive season.

"I urge everybody to think ahead and follow simple steps to have a safe and happy Christmas."

Kevin Hargin, Head of Foodborne Disease at the Food Standards Agency said: "We all love our turkey dinner at Christmas and this year should be no exception. It's the little things you do that can make a real difference. So if you make sure that your turkey is defrosted safely and in good time, you can enjoy your meal happily and safely."