Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Most Foodborne Illnesses Stem From Improper Cooling

Date:
March 8, 2000
Source:
Purdue University
Summary:
Nationally reported incidents of foodborne illness caused by E. coli bacteria have increased consumers' awareness of the importance of proper food handling and thorough cooking, but "Improper cooling is the No. 1 reported cause of foodborne illness in the United States," says Richard Linton. an associate professor of food safety at Purdue University.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Nationally reported incidents of foodborne illness caused by E. coli bacteria have increased consumers' awareness of the importance of proper food handling and thorough cooking, but "Improper cooling is the No. 1 reported cause of foodborne illness in the United States," says Richard Linton. an associate professor of food safety at Purdue University. "Most people recognize the need to cook foods to a temperature above 140 degrees in order to destroy most microorganisms that might be present, but they don't realize that any leftovers have to be cooled quickly so as not to allow any surviving bacteria to grow."

Related Articles


The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends that cooked food be cooled to the refrigeration temperature of 41 degrees Fahrenheit in less than four hours, but Linton says that's not as easy to accomplish as it sounds. He demonstrates this for his classes by preparing a big pot of chili and then measuring the amount of time it takes to cool to the recommended temperature.

"I cook the chili at 165 degrees and then let it cool to 140 degrees before placing the pot in a refrigerator that's set at 37 or 38 degrees," Linton says. "I then ask them how long they think it will take to cool down to 40 degrees. Rarely do I get a correct answer, which is between 20 and 24 hours."

Even people who have been cooking a long time may not realize the potential hazards of not cooling foods properly.

"How many people allow their Thanksgiving turkey to cool at room temperature for a couple hours before placing it in the fridge?" Linton asks. "If you've cooked it to the right temperature, you've killed all the bugs that are going to cause a problem right then. But bacteria thrives in that window between 140 and 40 degrees, and even a turkey carcass that's refrigerated immediately after it's carved is going to be in that temperature range a lot longer than four hours."

Consumers can speed up cooling time by using stainless steel containers that facilitate heat transfer; dividing food into smaller, shallower containers; slicing meat off the bone; stirring the food as it cools; or placing the container of food in an ice-water bath before putting it in the refrigerator.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Purdue University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Purdue University. "Most Foodborne Illnesses Stem From Improper Cooling." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 March 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000308085125.htm>.
Purdue University. (2000, March 8). Most Foodborne Illnesses Stem From Improper Cooling. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000308085125.htm
Purdue University. "Most Foodborne Illnesses Stem From Improper Cooling." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000308085125.htm (accessed February 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Hikers Rescued After Fall from Oregon Mountain

Hikers Rescued After Fall from Oregon Mountain

AP (Feb. 1, 2015) Two climbers who were hurt in a fall on Mount Hood are now being treated for their injuries. Rescue officials say they were airlifted off the mountain Saturday afternoon by an Oregon National Guard helicopter. (Feb. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smart Glasses Augment Reality to Help Visually Impaired

Smart Glasses Augment Reality to Help Visually Impaired

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Feb. 1, 2015) New augmented reality smart glasses developed by researchers at Oxford University can help people with visual impairments improve their vision by providing depth-based feedback, allowing users to "see" better. Joel Flynn reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flu Season Hitting Elderly Hard

Flu Season Hitting Elderly Hard

Reuters - US Online Video (Jan. 31, 2015) The CDC says this year&apos;s flu season is hitting people 65 years of age and older especially hard. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC: Get Vaccinated for Measles

CDC: Get Vaccinated for Measles

Reuters - US Online Video (Jan. 30, 2015) The CDC is urging people to get vaccinated for measles amid an outbreak that began at Disneyland and has now infected more than 90 people. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins