Food contamination

Contamination is the presence of any harmful or objectionable substance in food.

Examples of cross contamination 

Bacterial contamination of food

  • Direct - Raw meats touching ready-to-eat products
  • Indirect - Using a knife to cut raw meat and then using the same knife to cut a ready-to-eat product
  • Airborne contamination – sneezing over food
Where bacteria originate Type of bacteria
Animal E. coli
Poultry & Eggs Salmonella & Campylobacter
Vegetables Clostridium perfringens
Shellfish Viruses
Milk TB
Water E. coli
Staphylococcus aureus

Preventative measures against cross contamination

  • Store raw food and cooked food separately
  • Keep raw meat on the bottom shelf of the fridge
  • Use different chopping boards and knives for raw and cooked/ready-to-eat foods
  • Always cover foods that are stored in the fridge

Further information

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