Chefs and home cooks bring their best goodies to the table during the holidays. But no one wants a bout of food poisoning or too many unhealthy party snacks to dampen their holiday spirit. Join us for a lively and informative Twitter chat with questions and answers about holiday food safety.
Food safety experts from CDC, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the International Food Information Council Foundation, along with guest food connoisseurs will host a Twitter chat for consumers with easy-to-remember tips for a safer and healthier holiday season. You are invited to this lively and informative question-and-answer chat on how to be food-smart and food-safe over the holidays. Follow @CDCgov on Twitter and use the hashtag #CDCchat to participate.
What We’ll Be Chatting About?
From finger foods to turkey and dressing, there is never a time of year when food is more of a focus. Here are a few topics to expect:
• Food safety during the holidays. Holiday entertaining: party giver or guest? Stay clear of “Buffet Bandits”—food hazards that can rob your holiday enjoyment. Learn how to be the host of the season by practicing safe and healthy food preparation.
• Foods and germs: fact and fiction. Raw cookie dough and some eggnog recipes are yummy holiday treats that may contain raw eggs. But, eating and drinking raw eggs can lead to food poisoning. Learn about this, other foods and germs, and what’s fact and fiction.
• Who’s at risk? Pregnant women, children under five years old, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems are particularly at-risk from germs that cause food poisoning.
• Simple steps, big rewards. Don’t make your holiday party ground zero for an outbreak! Remember these simple steps: wash hands and surfaces often, avoid cross-contamination, cook foods to proper temperatures, and refrigerate promptly.
• Holiday tips for safer eating. People in vulnerable stages and ages of life should not eat soft cheeses, such as feta, brie, and queso fresco, unless they have labels that say they are pasteurized. Unpasteurized products can contain harmful bacteria and can cause infections such as listeriosis. Check the facts and join the chat for more recommendations that everyone can use.
Wait—What’s a Twitter chat?
Twitter chats are scheduled gatherings of people on Twitter to discuss anything that interests them, using a # hashtag to keep track of the conversation. There are chats for everything from blogging on art to agriculture to, yes, health!
Twitter chats offer participants a great way to network and share knowledge. It’s similar to a chat room in that it’s a topic-driven conversation happening in real time; it just happens to take place on Twitter.
Not using Twitter? No problem.
Just visit https://twitter.com/CDCgov and click “Sign Up” to get started.
How to Participate
Join us Wednesday, December 18, from 3–4 PM ET. Sign in by 2:45 PM ET.
To follow the conversation, search for the #CDCchat hashtag on Twitter. You may also use a third-party service such as Tweetchat. Be sure to use #CDCchat when you participate.
Spread the word
We’d also appreciate it if you could help us spread the word about the Twitter chat:
Promote the event on your Twitter and Facebook profiles.
• Retweet #CDCchat announcements from @CDCgov.
• Share the CDC Facebook event on your page.
• Participate in the chat.
Test Your Food Safety Knowledge
1. Outbreaks caused by which pathogen typically peak following Thanksgiving?
2. What safe minimum internal temperature is recommended for cooking turkey?
3. No one wants to spend Christmas running to the bathroom because the ham was bad. Once cooked, what temperature should you keep hot food at or above (all temperatures in °F)?
4. Mmmm… leftovers. How long can you safely freeze turkey leftovers? (Pieces, not whole turkey.)
5. Which U.S. president reportedly died from food poisoning? Bonus: What food reportedly was implicated?
6. What online tool lets you search for outbreaks in each state?
Wanna know the answers? Tune in to the chat to find these answers and much more. But, if you can’t wait, the answers are shown below.