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Food Safety in Tough Times: Making Smart Choices for Health and Savings

Food Safety in Tough Times: Making Smart Choices for Health and Savings

Rockhampton Council Urges Vigilance and Smart Choices for Health and Savings

Amidst the current economic challenges, Rockhampton Regional Council underscores the criticality of prioritising food safety during Australian Food Safety Week from 11 to 18 November 2023.

Councillor Grant Mathers emphasised the imperative need to safeguard health despite financial strains.

“This year’s theme, ‘Food safety – dollars and sense,’ aims to guide individuals in navigating the escalating cost of living without compromising on food safety,” Cr Mathers stated.

Stats Speak Volumes

Statistics reveal a concerning reality: Australia witnesses 4.67 million food poisoning cases annually, leading to 47,900 hospitalisations, 38 fatalities, and a staggering cost to the economy of $2.1 billion.

The local community cannot afford to become part of these alarming figures.

Practical Steps for Safety and Savings

Councillor Mathers offered invaluable advice to Rockhampton residents:

  • Check Expiry Dates: Optimise savings by purchasing food nearing its use-by date, ensuring timely consumption or freezing before expiry.
  • Leverage Your Freezer: Combat food waste by portioning and freezing meats, fruits, and vegetables. Even dairy products, like milk and cheese, can be frozen.
  • Economical Meat Cooking: Transitioning to cost-effective meat cuts requires thorough cooking—ensure a minimum internal temperature of 75°C using a meat thermometer.
  • Embrace Seasonal Produce: Seek seasonal fruits and vegetables for affordability and superior taste. Minor imperfections pose no safety risk.
  • Caution with Foraging: Avoid the allure of foraging for wild food due to potential toxicity and contamination risks.
  • Trust Legitimate Sources: Refrain from purchasing food from unverified sources or social media platforms to uphold food safety standards.

Seeking Assistance

For those in need, food charities such as FoodBankThe Smith FamilySalvation Army, or St. Vincent de Paul Society offer support. Councillor Mathers cautioned against acquiring discarded food, emphasising potential contamination risks and expired dates.

Brini Wines