How safe is your salad bowl? Check it out!
Green salad is one of the most favorite food of many people. Vegatable contain lots of essential nutrients and fibre which are good to our health. With the addition of different toppings and dressing, salad bowl is definitely a good refreshing choice in the hot summer time. However, have you ever been awared of the food safety risk of the salad bowl sold in the salad bar? Early this year a group of scientist had published their research on the hygiene condition of some salad ingredient sold in the salad bar in Singapore* which may give us some hints on the safety issue.
The study pointed out some findings which are quite scary. Over 40% of the seafood ingredient (including smoked salmon) sold over the salad bar contains Listeria monocytogenes, the bacteria which may lead to death in infants, immunocompromised individuals and the eldery, and may cause premature death of newborn babies. Over 20% of overall ingredients contains E. coli and the median total bacterial count are above the acceptable limit, an indication of poor food hygiene management. Listeria monocytogenes can be found in cold storaging food like cold cut meat, smoked salmon and also milk product and cheese. Susceptable individuals should avoid the consumption of these food product. Vegatables must be washed thoroughly as bacteria can attach to the rough vegatable surface tighly which is difficult to remove. Soak and wash under running water can help to loosen the bacteria.
Prepared salad should be consumed immediately to avoid re-growth of bacteria or further contamination. Kitchen should prepare salad properly to reduce food poisoning risk, and consumer should look for reputable store to buy the product.