CDC says check your pantry, throw away recalled and expired goods before the holiday season

CDC says check your pantry, throw away recalled and expired goods before the holiday season
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(WAFB) - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is asking folks to follow safe food handling practices by closely checking labels on food packaging for expiration dates, and actively monitoring updates on recalled goods.

As we head into the holiday season, preparing food on short notice and being caught off guard about how much of a specific dish needs to be prepared can create high-risk situations where consumers may reach into their pantry without properly checking labels, exposing others to potentially dangerous illnesses.

A 2016 outbreak of E. Coli infections that made 63 people sick was linked to consuming raw flour. The health issues that come from this bacteria can include bloody diarrhea, need for prolonged hospitalization, and kidney failure.

The CDC provided a list of food-handling practices in a warning issued Monday. These practices include following label directions to refrigerate, cleaning up thoroughly and, of course, not eating raw cookie dough.

The CDC also recommended that if you stored flour or other recalled goods in a container and no longer have the package, throw them out to be safe. The department says it’s important to make sure you clean containers that previously held food products with warm, soapy water before using them again.

The department sent out the warning last week since families are likely to spend more time in the kitchen preparing baked goods. Eating or tasting unbaked dough could make you sick because the raw flour and uncooked eggs contain bacteria and salmonella.

Eggs used to make cookie dough or batter contain a germ called salmonella, which can also make you sick if the eggs are eaten raw or not cooked enough.

In addition, the CDC reminded the public of a cake mix recall from November 7 for four varieties of Duncan Hines cake mixes because of reports of them containing salmonella.

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