Food safety campaign

Winchester City Council’s food safety specialists are supporting a national campaign aimed at helping the over 60’s avoid potentially life-threatening cases of Listeria.

The number of cases of Listeria has doubled nationally since 2001. People with reduced immunity are more vulnerable to the disease and 70% of cases occur in people over 60 years in age.

During National Food Safety Week, which runs from the 15th to 21st June 2009, the City Council’s Commercial Team will be working with local sheltered housing schemes and providing advice to age concern to promote the correct ways to store and handle high risk foods in the home.

Simple steps to minimise the risk of infection include:

  • Following storage instructions on food labels and keeping high risk foods refrigerated

  • Keeping fridge temperatures below 5°C

  • Using food by the ‘use-by’ date

  • Washing salads, fruit and vegetables before eating

Launching the initiative, Councillor Frank Pearson, the City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Environment, said: “We are delighted to support this important initiative. Food poisoning is a very unpleasant and potentially dangerous condition; particularly for older people. The focus will be on providing simple, practical advice on how to reduce the risk of contracting Listeria.”

Anyone wanting more information on the campaign or advice on other food safety issues can contact the Commercial Team on 01962 840 222.