Council promotes food safety
Wakefield Council is working with partners to remind residents the importance of food safety.
As a part of a national campaign the Council, Morrison's, and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) are promoting this year's food safety week which takes place between June 16-22 and centres on the fight against Campylobacter.
Campylobacter is the most common cause of food poisoning in the UK and can spread through the preparation and cooking of chicken. It can't be seen, smelt or tasted on food, but has severe symptoms including diarrhoea, sickness and in the worst case can lead to death.
The Council will be:
• Having stands set up in the Atrium at Wakefield one with information
• Carrying out a prize draw in conjunction with Morrison's to win a cleaning hamper and test knowledge on food awareness
• Offering level two food courses at reduced prices to educate residents
Cllr Maureen Cummings, Cabinet member for Environment and Communities said: "As a Council we must ensure the safety of our local residents. We are proud to be keeping people in Wakefield safe and well by being part of this campaign to spread the words – and not the germs.
"We want to help local people to understand how to prepare and cook safe meals for themselves and their families to keep healthy and avoid harmful conditions. We hope to see many residents at our upcoming activities and events."
Bob Martin, Head of Foodborne Disease Strategy at the Food Standards Agency said: "This is a serious problem and we are calling on the whole industry to do act together to tackle Campylobacter. People in Wakefield can do their part by handling and preparing chicken with extra care – don't wash raw chicken, cook it properly and enjoy it safely."
Rachael Teale from Morrisons supermarket said: "We are proud to be working with the Food Standards Agency and other partners to promote the messages of Food Safety Week. As a responsible retailer we want to ensure that every chicken bought in our stores safely makes its way to the dinner table and hope that the focus of this week will help dispel some 'food myths' and help people receive the correct advice on keeping safe in their own kitchens. "
The FSA is spearheading a campaign to bring together the whole food chain to tackle the problem. Farmers and producers will be asked to work harder to reduce the amount of bacteria on their raw poultry.
The council is offering Level 2 food courses to businesses at a reduced rate during Food Safety Week. These can be seen at www.wakefield.gov.uk and include discounts. FSW14 code should be used to apply the reduced rates.
Advice is available at www.food.gov.uk/chicken