Keep Halloween Food Scares Away with these Top Tips from STOP


Tricks and treats are always fun for Halloween but foodborne illness can put a quick end to the festivities.

“Kids are very susceptible to foodborne illness - especially those 5 and under,” said Mitzi Baum, CEO of STOP Foodborne Illness, a national nonprofit dedicated to food safety. “Reports show that 10 percent of parents surveyed said they’ve had a child get sick from contaminated food. That’s a scary fact.”

The Centers for Disease Control estimates that 48 million people get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die from foodborne diseases each year in the United States.

Keep your trick-or-treaters healthy and make this Halloween a memorable one by following these easy tips:

  • Clean hands, please – ringing doorbells, grabbing handrails, and reaching into candy buckets is a recipe for the spread of germs. Make sure that hands are washed with soap and water before eating.
  • Wrap it up – only commercially produced candy that’s fully wrapped should be eaten. Make sure that wrappers are tight and closures sealed before letting your kids rip into the goodies.
  • Home-baked goodies – everyone loves the idea of a home-baked sweet, but unless you know who baked it, toss it.
  • Treats on the go? Just say “No!” – eager trick-or-treaters will want to dive into their goodies immediately. Give them a light snack or meal before you hit the streets and urge your kids to wait until they get home so that you and they can inspect their sweets.
  • Pasteurized cider only – it’s one of the best tastes of the season, but make sure that cider you’re drinking is pasteurized. Unpasteurized juice or cider could contain bacteria like Salmonella or E. coli.

For more on keeping food safe visit https://stopfoodborneillness.org/awareness/safe-cooking-temperatures-2.


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