Story of Michigan Halloween Safety Tips - WNEM TV 5

Story of Michigan Halloween Safety Tips

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The Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development is reminding residents to take precautions and follow safe food handling tips to keep kids and party guests safe this Halloween.

"By following quick trick-or-treat tips, parents are making sure their little monsters and princesses are going to be eating safe treats," said Kevin Besey, Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development, Food and Dairy Division Director. "It's also important to make sure the foods you serve at your Halloween get-togethers are handled safely to prevent foodborne illness."

Parents should follow these quick trick-or-treat tips:

  • Tell children not to accept, and especially not eat, anything that isn't commercially wrapped. Avoid eating homemade treats unless you know the cook well.
  • When children bring their treats home, discard any home-made candy or baked goods. Parents of young children should also remove any choking hazards such as gum, peanuts, hard candies or small toys.
  • Inspect commercially wrapped treats for signs of tampering, such as an unusual appearance or discoloration, tiny pinholes, or tears in wrappers. Throw away anything that looks suspicious.
  • Parents should wash all fresh fruit thoroughly and inspect it for holes, including small punctures.  Fruit should be cut open before allowing kids to eat it.
  • Some Halloween treats may trigger allergic reactions. Read the complete label and ingredient list of products before interpreting it is safe for all to eat.
  • To help prevent children from snacking while they're out trick-or-treating, and before parents have inspected the treats, give them a snack or light meal before they go.
  • If juice or cider is served to children at Halloween parties, make sure it is pasteurized or otherwise treated to destroy harmful bacteria. Juice or cider that has not been treated will say so on the label.
  • As always, proper hand washing is essential to food safety.  Remind kids to wash their hands before eating.
  • Remember, when in doubt, throw it out!

And, if your Halloween celebration includes a party, remember: Halloween is spooky enough without having foodborne bacteria crash the party.  The Partnership for Food Safety Education offers these safe food tips for Halloween:

  • When whipping up Halloween treats, don't taste dough and batters that contain uncooked eggs. 
  • Scare foodborne bacteria away by keeping all perishable foods chilled until serving time.
  • At serving time, keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold.
  • Throw away any perishable leftovers at the end of your party that have been kept at room temperature for more than two hours.


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