Going with pink this Bank Holiday weekend could leave you red-faced warn Cherwell District Council

People are being encouraged to thoroughly cook BBQ meat
People are being encouraged to thoroughly cook BBQ meat

The weather is forecast to be bright and sunny this Bank Holiday weekend so inevitably barbecues will be cleaned off and dragged onto the patio.

Cherwell resident, however, are being reminded to make sure all burgers, sausages and other meats are thoroughly cooked all the way through.

New research for the Food Standards Agency (FSA) shows that 29 per cent of people in the South East said they eat burgers that are pink or have pink juices.

Cherwell District Council (CDC) is backing the FSA’s call for people to eat safely this Bank Holiday weekend.

Cllr Kieron Mallon, CDC’s lead member for public protection and community services, said: “Some people enjoy a rare steak, but there is always a risk, especially with homemade burgers or any minced meat, that bacteria may be present in the middle.

“You can avoid the embarrassment of ruining the weekend for yourself and your guests by cooking your burgers and kebabs thoroughly.”

The Food Standards Agency’s Food and You Survey, collected information on food safety through 3,118 interviews across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and found that in the South East:

• 29 per cent of people in the South East were the most likely to say they eat burgers that are pink or have pink juices at least some of the time, despite guidelines recommending they should be fully cooked before eating

• 54 per cent knew that a fridge should be kept between 0°C and 5°C

• 45 per cent did not check their fridge temperature regularly

• 45 per cent defrost meat or fish at room temperature despite recommendations to defrost meat or fish in the fridge or in the microwave

• 24 per cent do not change or clean their chopping boards between different foods

• 21 per cent always washed raw chicken, despite advice saying this practise risks spreading bacteria and should be avoided

Over the summer the FSA have run a number of campaigns to improve food safety with the four C’s of food hygiene at their core, Chilling, Cooking, Clean and avoiding Cross Contamination.

For tips on how to stay safe this summer visit www.food.gov.uk/safe-summer-food.