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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

TSA, Thanksgiving and Safe Food – Makes Staying Home Seem Reasonable

TSA_Debuts_Full_1682.jpgI travel alot.  However, I will not be traveling this week, and if I was, I would not be carting the following:

Baked goodies: Cakes and pies will be allowed through security checkpoints, although they may be swabbed for explosives, said TSA spokesman Jim Fotenos. Just about everything else that goes into a Thanksgiving feast needs to be placed into checked luggage or, better yet, left at home, according to a travel guide posted on http://www.tsa.gov.

Watch those liquids: To avoid baggage fees, passengers are cramming more into their hand luggage these days. “We’ve seen just about everything,” the TSA Web site said. But when moist foods run up against the 3-ounce limit on liquids in carry-on bags, security concerns almost always win. That means no creamy dips, cranberry sauce, maple syrup, salsa, salad dressing, oils and vinegars. And definitely no alcohol, although travelers can purchase booze in duty-free shops once they clear checkpoints.

The room-temperature threat: While the terrorism threat posed by gravy may be debatable, there’s no argument that the strict TSA rules may spare food-toting travelers from a more immediate threat: food poisoning. Foods containing protein — hello, gravy — should not be left out at room temperature for more than two hours, said Toby Smithson, community dietician with the Lake County Health Department. Otherwise, microorganisms can attach themselves to the proteins and turn creamy casseroles or dips into gastrointestinal bombs. Just getting to the airport and navigating security lines could place food-toting travelers at the two-hour limit, Smithson noted, “let alone the flight and sitting on the tarmac.”

  • doc raymond

    just take the visiting relatives to the local restaurant that is open for Thanksgiving Day. Avoid the transport issues of TSA or even the temperatures needed to be maintained from home to home to control pathgen growth. Supoort your locals restaurants. they need the business.