Storing food in the fridge can often feel like playing a game of Tetris so it’s no surprise people struggle to store their shopping in the fridge correctly. But not knowing the proper place to store meat in the refrigerator could be causing you and your loved one’s serious damage, particularly at Christmas.
New research from Tap Warehouse has found that 40% of Brits do not store their raw meat, poultry, and fish in the proper section of the fridge.
Where should things be stored in the fridge?
The most hygienic way to store raw meat, poultry and fish is on the bottom shelf. This is to avoid the raw meat accidentally dripping on to other foods and contaminating them.
However, despite this, many of us prefer to pop our raw meat the top shelf of the fridge. Another 12% surveyed admitted to storing their raw animal protein in the fruit and veg drawer.
‘Blood and other fluids which may contain high levels of pathogens could drip onto the ready to eat food and contaminate the food with pathogens,’ warns Louise Roberts, Director of Food Safety Company Alimenti.
That is very bad news if you store any ready to eat snacks on the lower selves. ‘If consumed without any further treatment, such as cooking, the ready to eat food may cause illness,’ she adds.
However, even if you’ve perfected the food storage in your fridge there is another Christmas dinner food poisoning risk lurking in the Kitchen – washing the turkey.
The survey revealed the 37 per cent of Brit’s wash raw poultry before eating it. Rather than being more hygienic, this is actually putting you at greater risk of food poisoning.
‘The spray from a piece of poultry being washed can travel up to 50cm. This spray may contain Salmonella and E.coli, as well as other pathogens. It can land on clean crockery on a draining rack, as well as the clothes and face of the person washing the poultry,’ explains Louise Roberts.
So unless you’re giving your Turkey a Nigella Lawson inspired brine bath this year, keep the water far away from your bird this year. And make sure it goes on the bottom shelf.