Ironically, last year’s 2014 Food Safety Summit, which was held at the Baltimore, Maryland Convention Center during April, resulted in 216 outbreak associated food contamination cases. Individuals complained of having diarrhea or vomiting up to 72 hours after the conference took place. The Office of Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Outbreak Response Prevention and Health Promotion Administration Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene reported results in a Summary Report in September 2014. The factor of the outbreak was consumption of pan seared breast of chicken Marsala served for lunch others that complained stated that the cause was from other items that appeared to be undercooked such as cheeseburger sliders that were also served during the convention. The Food Safety Summit has addressed the serious issue and it is believe they will address the 2014 contamination outbreak again at its yearly conference from September 28-30, 2015 in Las Vegas www.foodsafetysummit.com. It is my opinion that the Food Safety Summit will continue to be responsible and effective as it always has been in regards to food safety and will come up with safe food service solutions for its members.
Everyone involved in the food industry should be highly concerned and should make sure to take the necessary precautions to assure that consumers are never given contaminated food. If this event could happen as a result food served during the Food Safety Summit it could happen to any of us involved in the food business. We can provide safeguards throughout the entire food chain cycle including sourcing and purchase, logistics, storage, and retail sale. We need to constantly check products as it moves along from producers down to retailers and ultimately consumers. Those of us in the industry have a responsibility to assure that our equipment is functioning properly and consistently keeping products at safe temperatures. Retailers need to rely on their food preps, cooks, chefs, and kitchen managers to make sure food products are stored and served at proper temperatures. In addition, if products have not moved to consumption in a timely manner regular audit and termination of outdated products needs to occur on a scheduled basis. In addition, everyone that has anything to do with the movement of food or direct food preparation, all staff throughout the chain of delivery and retail consumption, should be routinely washing their hands throughout the day and wearing appropriate equipment to assure cleanliness. This is our responsibility to the consumers that all of us ultimately serve.
* This article Food Safety Prevent Contamination is clearly an opinionated blog and does not represent the official opinion for the Company, NorthBourne Food Suppliers dba NorthBourne Foods