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Doggy bags

It’s a very generally used term these days – Can I have these leftovers in a Doggy Bag? The term was originally used for food leftovers to be taken home with the intention of becoming food for the family pet. It is now more common for the contents of a Doggy Bag to be intended for human consumption at a later time.

Most patrons of food establishments are oblivious of the consequences that improper food handling may incur. Surely enough, foodstuffs purchased become the property of the customer, but it should remain an obligation of those involved in the preparation and service of foods to inform others of the potential risks.

Doggy Bags may raise the potential for food safety related implications through improper handling, storage and contamination. Such risks may include, but are not limited to:

  • Excess time in the Temperature Danger Zone (Between 5ºC and 60ºC).
  • Contamination between raw and cooked foods inside a domestic kitchen.
  • Contamination with food borne pathogens.

The potential risks to a customer requesting a Doggy Bag may be reduced by:

  • Ensuring foodstuffs to be taken away from the premises are Contained Appropriately, Dated and Content Labelled. Record these details in a Doggy Bag Log – This may seem a little time consuming, but the recording of such details may prove due diligence should a food safety related problem occur.
  • Provide the customer with some basic information including Storage, Handling and Reheating instructions in relation to time.
    

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