While the food presented on television cooking shows look good enough to eat, recent studies claim these programs may pose a public health threat if the food safety practices of the chefs are mimicked.
Research out of Kansas State University reveals these shows primarily portray unsafe food preparation and cooking practices. The study in the Journal of Public Health examines 100 cooking shows that involve 24 popular celebrity chefs, observing their food safety behaviors while on air.
The study found the most common hazards included lack of handwashing, failure to change cutting boards between ingredients, and failure to use a thermometer when cooking meat, which can all cause foodborne bacteria to develop.
About 1 in 6 Americans are exposed to foodborne illnesses each year, according to the CDC. This amounts to about 48 million people in the U.S., contributing to 5,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths annually.
Ultimately, foodborne illnesses are 100 percent preventable using proper food safety procedures, such as washing hands, avoiding cross-contamination, and sanitizing a cooking area—essential steps that are often overlooked in television shows. In fact, no chef observed in the study received a perfect score in terms of safety practices.
According to the researchers, this finding “proves a need for improvement in demonstrated and communicated food safety behaviors among professional chefs. It also suggests that public health professionals must work to mitigate the impact of poorly modeled behaviors.”| | | Next → | Single Page