How Safe Is Your Supermarket?

by in Food Safety, Grocery Shopping, September 21, 2011

grocery store
We all buy food somewhere – from the grocery store, farmers’ market, membership clubs or specialty markets. These places must all follow food safety practices to keep food safe. Sadly, this isn’t always the case. Keep your eyes peeled for some of these frequent “ick” factors wherever you shop.

DIY Inspection
All establishments that sell food must adhere to food safety guidelines. They get inspected just like restaurants. During your next trip to the market, take a few minutes to visually inspect the premises yourself. Here are few things to take notice of:

  • Do the floors look clean?
  • Are spills being cleaned up immediately?
  • Is the canned food dusty?
  • Do the deli and other service counters appear clean?
  • Is the stock well organized?
  • Is food displayed within its expiration date?
  • Does the produce look fresh?
  • Are there signs of pests like mouse droppings or roaches?

Keep Your Eyes Peeled
Here are some other important things to pay attention to when food shopping:

  • Rips and tears: Check packages for rips on the edge of the package. This can indicate that a pest has gotten into the food.
  • Water stains: Dry packages like rice and flour sometimes have water stains. You’ll find a discoloration on the outside of the package.
  • Dented, bloating, or rusted cans: Always visually check canned food. Be sure it’s free of dents, bloating, rust, or leaks. These are all indications of the botulism, a potentially deadly foodborne illness.
  • The buffet bar: If the market has a hot or cold salad-type bar, make sure the hot food is hot and the cold food is cold. Trays of food shouldn’t be stacked on top of each other. If you’re in doubt, stay away.
  • The conveyor belt: Although they should be cleaned and sanitized at least every 4 hours, I have rarely seen it being practiced. My suggestion: never place unwrapped food directly on the conveyor belt. Always use plastics bags provided for fresh produce.
  • Bagged groceries: Always check that raw meats and bagged separately from produce and other ready-to-eat food. Chemicals should also be packed in their own bag just in case they spill.
  • Get food home ASAP: Be sure perishable food doesn’t sit outside the refrigerator for too long. If you’re planning on keeping the food in the car, be sure to have a cooler on hand packed with ice.

TELL US: How do you make sure the food you buy is safe?

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby’s full bio »

You Might Also Like:

More posts from .

Similar Posts

Can Hypoallergenic Peanuts Live Up to the Hype?

Researchers claim they have the answer to those suffering from peanut allergies. But is a hypoallergenic peanut all it’s cracked up to be?

Comments (211)

  1. emoticons for facebook…

    Emoticons are becoming a cultural icon of their own kind. With this fun, and often corky graphics recipients possess the ability to comprehend the sender’s mental states thoroughly via chat and instant messenger services literally at any given time. Th…

  2. [...] How Safe is Your Supermarket? [...]

  3. [...] How Safe is Your Supermarket? [...]

  4. I just lately found your web site site aol and read due to numerous of your earlier web sites. Keep the fantastic function. Also my spouse and i superfluous your Rss in order to my LIVE MESSENGER News Reader. Looking onward to conception more of your respective material in a short time!

  5. Jed Boldery says:

    If you could possibly message me in addition to any tips regarding how you’ve made your blog seem this type of good, I could be thankful.

  6. Hi there! I know this is kinda off topic nevertheless I’d figured I’d ask. Would you be interested in exchanging links or maybe guest authoring a blog post or vice-versa? My blog addresses a lot of the same topics as yours and I feel we could greatly benefit from each other. If you might be interested feel free to shoot me an email. I look forward to hearing from you! Wonderful blog by the way!

  7. You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I in finding this matter to be actually something that I believe I would never understand. It sort of feels too complicated and extremely huge for me. I am looking ahead on your subsequent put up, I will try to get the hang of it!

  8. Ciara Bresse says:

    What’s up everybody, I am sure you will be enjoying here by watching these hilarious video lessons.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>