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Holiday Party Food Safety Tips

By Tawnya Manion | December 23, 2013

Photo: USDAgov
Photo: USDAgov

Photo: USDAgov

The holiday season consists of numerous parties. Many where we’re called upon to make or take food to an event. Usually, people set out edibles on a buffet table, and people graze throughout the evening. However, when food is left out at room temperature for too long it starts to be a breading ground for bacteria, which could possibly cause illnesses. To ensure a safe and smooth holiday, practice these following tips to keeping the food at your celebrations innocuous.  Read More

News

Quit Buggin’ Out: Eating Insects and its Cultural Phobia

By admin | May 8, 2012

Photo: Adam Schneider

Photo: Adam Schneider

By: Dylan Rodgers

Why are some of the world’s oldest organisms considered so alien?  Strangely enough once that crab (an arthropod) walks out of the water and transforms into let’s say, a beetle (still an arthropod), our appetite jumps ship.  We could also ask ourselves as Americans, Why hasn’t the insect-eating world gotten sick or turned into some horrifying “Anthropod” population?

The fact is, all people in the world consume insects whether they know about it or not.  It’s estimated that every American eats nearly 3 pounds of insects a year from processed foods alone.

Now don’t panic-if the insects haven’t killed you yet, then they most likely won’t.   Read More

News

NYC Restaurant Grades Prove Successful

By admin | March 20, 2012

Photo: Mike Licht

Photo: Mike Licht

By: Michael Engle

Customer feedback is regarded as invaluable among chefs, restaurateurs, and fellow foodies.  Although few people will take stock in any one particular review, whether good or bad, most will affirm that a consensus will always be heard and, if necessary, can trigger a necessary change within the restaurant.  As New York City recently completed its first full calendar year of sanitation grades (the initiative was launched in July 2010), Associated Press’ Cristian Salazar reports that despite some difficulties in reconciling the health code with traditional cooking methods, the city’s grading system has been a popular success.

In New York City, restaurants are inspected on a regular basis, and are awarded a letter grade of A, B, or C.  (If a restaurant cannot fix a certain violation instantly, it can be shut down until the problem is rectified.)  Unlike elite universities, where an A is considered a rare privilege, it is relatively shameful for a restaurant not to receive an A.  Read More

News

News of ‘Pink Slime’ in Ground Beef Causes Concern

By Jeannette | March 12, 2012

Photo: artizone

Photo: artizone

By: Justin Chan

Although news about a more eco-friendly American beef industry seems promising, some critics are uneasy about the ground beef that consumers are buying.

According to ABC News, 70 percent of ground beef sold at supermarkets is made up of “pink slime” or beef trimmings. Gerald Zirnstein, a former United States Department of Agriculture scientist who first coined the term, said that customers are being cheated out of their money and unknowingly buying artificial beef. “It’s economic fraud,” he said. “It’s not fresh ground beef. … It’s a cheap substitute being added in.” Read More

News

Food Safety Comes to Twitter

By admin | March 12, 2012

Photo: USDAgov

Photo: USDAgov

By: Michael Engle

Do you find it difficult to keep track of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s food recommendations?  Do you fail to remember whether it was cantaloupes or honeydews that were recently contaminated with listeria?  Do you wonder whether or not a Connecticut concern should be on New York’s radar?  If so, then you might find some comfort, as the USDA will be using Twitter as a vehicle to effectively communicate such local and national information.

Although news releases will always be available, online and in full form, for those who care to know of specific details, the Associated Press reports on the USDA’s further adoption of the 140-character platform.  In addition to the general feed, @USDAFoodSafety, each state will have its own Twitter feed, which will be used to re-Tweet national news and broadcast state alerts.  Read More

News

Breaking the Rules: A Look at Food Health Regulations

By admin | March 6, 2012

Photo: Greg Williams

Photo: Greg Williams

By: Melaina Gasbarrino

In the case of food health regulations, some restaurants around New York City tend to break the rules. Why you may ask? Well it is due in large part to the chefs knowing the difference between preparing the food the way it should be, or adhering to The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene regulations.

First things first, lets take a look at it from the perspective of New York City’s chefs. Through and through, many chefs stick to the stringent regulations as they don’t want to downgrade their restaurant from an A to B. With 77% of restaurants receiving a Grade A in health regulations, it’s comforting knowing the many nooks and crannies you find restaurants in are Grade A.  For the other 23%, well they have been downgraded to a B because of the most recent violations of ‘keeping food too hot or cold’, which is notably according to the NY Times’ analysis of city records. Read More

News

Listeria Outbreaks Prompt Support for FDA Budget Increase

By admin | February 15, 2012

Photo: AJ Cann

Photo: AJ Cann

By: Michael Engle

It is often said that “once is an incidence, twice is a coincidence, but thrice is a pattern.”  Last September, the US Food and Drug Administration confirmed a pattern of listeria-laced domestic produce, as the government agency recalled cantaloupes from Colorado’s Jensen Farms.  As a result, these unsafe melons have become the third such case in the last three years, following a November 2010 finding in certain Texas celery, as well as an April 2009 recall of Connecticut sprouts.

In response to these potentially fatal findings, President Barack Obama has lobbied for a 17% increase in the FDA budget, with increased federal spending effective fiscal year 2013.  However, because this plan would be achieved by increasing company fees instead of tax dollars, the FDA has requested an additional $220 million budgetary increase.  These budgetary plans will undoubtedly become contentious among Washington’s Democrats and Republicans. Read More

News

Arsenic Exposure Now Through Rice

By admin | December 14, 2011

Photo: Hanoi Mark

Photo: Hanoi Mark

By: Saira Malhotra

Yet again, eyebrows are being raised at the food industry; this time it’s rice. It’s hard to imagine why these tiny pearly whites have become a cause for concern (unless you are an avid follower of the Montignac diet), but they have and the reason is alarming. Recent studies are pointing at rice for causing increased level of arsenic in our system. High levels of arsenic ingestion can lead to cardio vascular problems, cancer and skin lesions, however now, researchers are concerned about a specific community who are at great risk with even a ‘low-dose’ of exposure- pregnant women. Scientists are linking low dosage exposure of the chemical to low-birth weight and even infant death. Read More

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Food Contamination: Reincarnation or Reconditioning?

By admin | November 30, 2011

Photo: stevendepolo

Photo: stevendepolo

By: Saira Malhotra

This month, MSNBC reported on another factory that came under inspection after it supplied schools and a baby food manufacturer with repackaged apple sauce laced with potentially hazardous mold. Snokist Growers of Yakina Washington received a written warning from the FDA which threw its food safety measures in doubt after it continued to use molded apples in it’s canned products.

Snokist is no stranger to being under the watchful of eye of interrogation as they were in a similar place back in June of this year when 9 children fell sick after eating apple sauce. Read More

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Holiday Food Safety Tips

By admin | November 24, 2011

Photo: srqpix

Photo: srqpix

In addition to the holiday season being in full swing, so are germs. It is critical to minimize the risk of you or your guests falling prey to sickness, particularly if it is a foodborne illness.

The Department of Health and Human Services Public Health Branch are urging us to revisit health and safety practices when handling food. Why become a culprit or victim when all you need to do is be mindful of ensuring food is cooked through, stored at the correct temperature and your hands, utensils, and work space is sanitized. Read More

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Whether it’s finding the best goat tacos in LA, spotting a well-worn vintage bag in Sweden, or interviewing the “crab man” selling seafood on a corner in Harlem, we tell stories seen from Chef Marcus Samuelsson‘s point of view. MarcusSamuelsson.com strives to create conversations about food, nutrition, culture, art, and design. We want to find Read More

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