USDA FSIS offers tips and resources to make this Thanksgiving safe and stress-free

WASHINGTON, 2017-Nov-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — More than 45 million turkeys are eaten on Thanksgiving Day, with a never-ending list of side dishes and desserts. The Thanksgiving meal is by far the largest and most stressful meal many consumers prepare all year, leaving room for mistakes that can make guests sick. But never fear, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is available with tips and resources to make this Thanksgiving safe and stress-free.

“Turkey and other meat and poultry may contain Salmonella and Campylobacter that can lead to serious foodborne illness,” said acting FSIS Administrator Paul Kiecker. “By properly handling and cooking your turkey, you can avoid these harmful pathogens and ensure your family has a safe and healthy Thanksgiving feast.”

Begin by following these five steps:

Wash your hands, but not your turkey

Washing your hands before cooking is the simplest way to stop the spread of bacteria, while washing your turkey is the easiest way to spread bacteria all over your kitchen. According to the 2016 Food and Drug Administration Food Safety Survey, 68 percent of consumers wash poultry in the kitchen sink, which is not recommended by the USDA. Research shows that washing meat or poultry can splash bacteria around your kitchen by up to 3 feet, contaminating countertops, towels and other food. Washing doesn’t remove bacteria from the bird. Only cooking the turkey to the correct internal temperature will ensure all bacteria are killed.

The exception to this rule is brining. When rinsing brine off of a turkey, be sure to remove all other food or objects from the sink, layer the area with paper towels and use a slow stream of water to avoid splashing.

To stuff or not to stuff

For optimal food safety, do not stuff the turkey. Even if the turkey is cooked to the correct internal temperature, the stuffing inside may not have reached a temperature high enough to kill the bacteria. It is best to cook the stuffing in a separate dish.

Take the temperature of the bird

Although there are various ways to cook a turkey, the only way to avoid foodborne illness is to make sure it is cooked to the correct internal temperature as measured by a food thermometer. Take the bird’s temperature in three areas — the thickest part of the breast, the innermost part of the wing and the innermost part of the thigh — make sure all three locations reach 165ºF. If one of those locations does not register at 165ºF, then continue cooking until all three locations reach the correct internal temperature.

Follow the two-hour rule

Perishable foods should not be left on the table or countertops for longer than two hours. After two hours, food falls into the Danger Zone, temperatures between 40-140ºF, where bacteria can rapidly multiply. If that food is then eaten, your guests could get sick. Cut turkey into smaller slices and refrigerate along with other perishable items, such as potatoes, gravy and vegetables. Leftovers should stay safe in the refrigerator for four days.

When in doubt call the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline

If you have questions about your Thanksgiving dinner, call the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) to talk to a food safety expert. You can also chat live at, available from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday, in English and Spanish.

If you need help on Thanksgiving Day, the Meat and Poultry Hotline is available from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET.

Consumers with food safety questions can visit to learn more about how to safely select, thaw and prepare a turkey. For more Thanksgiving food safety tips, follow FSIS on Twitter, @USDAFoodSafety, or on Facebook, at


Food Safety Education Staff
Press (202) 720-9113
Consumer Inquiries (888) 674-6854

Source: USDA

Colruyt Group: the eggs on our shelves are safe

Halle, Belgium, 2017-Aug-10 — /EPR Retail News/ — Our customers’ safety and health is our first and most important priority. Colruyt Group is closely monitoring the situation with regards to the current Fipronil contamination in the eggs. We continue asking our suppliers for supplementary analyses, as an extra control on top of the analyses that were done by the FASFC (Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain). In this way, we want to ensure that the eggs that are currently on our shelves, are safe.

For the moment, none of the Colruyt Group stores have the impacted lot numbers that are mentioned on the FASFC website on their shelves. This has been a fact in the past. Even though we were very fast in removing the affected lots from our shelves following the demand of the supplier, there is a possibility that a certain amount of customers have bought eggs of those specific lots (it concerns eggs of the brand Boni and Everyday). These clients can return those eggs to their stores, where they will be helped by our staff.

No implicated eggs for sale

The lot numbers of the eggs with excessive concentrations of Fipronil are mentioned on the website of the FASFC. Colruyt Group has none of these lot numbers for sale anymore. Some lot numbers of our safe eggs sometimes only differ by one digit from the lot numbers of the eggs with too much fipronil. To be on the safe side, we now removed all lots of those eggs (Boni and Everyday) from our shelves as well, in order to avoid further confusion among our customers.

Extra checks of our eggs

The eggs on our shelves have not only been screened by the FASFC. Colruyt Group has taken it a step further and asked our suppliers to supply extra analyses of their samples, and we are carrying out extra checks. In this way we have built in an additional guarantee for the safety of our customers. We monitor the situation and will examine whether extra measures are required. Today, the eggs on the shelves of the Colruyt Group stores are safe.

Hanne Poppe
+32 (0)2 363 55 45
+32 (0)473 92 45 10

Source: Colruyt Group

The Jean Coutu Group launches services to contribute to a safe and healthy travel

Varennes, Quebec, 2017-Feb-20 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Jean Coutu Group (PJC) Inc. (The “Corporation” or the “Jean Coutu Group”) and the pharmacist-owners affiliated with its network announce the launch of several services to contribute to a safe and healthy travel.

“Many people travel this time of the year! That’s why it’s important to offer them accessible services to plan their vacation,” says Richard Mayrand, Executive Vice-President, Pharmacy and Government Affairs of the Jean Coutu Group.

Vaccination Centre

More than 190 Jean Coutu-affiliated pharmacies located in all regions of Quebec offer the opportunity to meet a nurse who can assess the needs of travellers and administer the necessary vaccines on site before departure. The list of vaccination centres is available here.

Consultation: Possibilities of Bill 41

According to the act Prescribing a medication when no diagnosis is required, the pharmacist can now:

  • Prescribe to treat traveller’s diarrhea
  • Prescribe to prevent malaria and acute mountain sickness

Pharmacists have always been able to advise travellers on the various measures and precautions to be taken depending on the destination. Pharmacists are also available to guide patients in selecting the right medications to bring, how they are stored and their use.

Preparation checklist:

A checklist has been developed to help travellers remember important items when making travel preparations. This document is available in store or among several other tips in the new section:

About The Jean Coutu Group
The Jean Coutu Group is one of the most trusted names in Canadian pharmacy retailing. The Corporation operates a network of 418 franchised stores in Québec, New Brunswick and Ontario under the banners of PJC Jean Coutu, PJC Clinique, PJC Santé and PJC Santé Beauté, which employs more than 20,000 people. Furthermore, the Jean Coutu Group owns Pro Doc Ltd (“Pro Doc”), a Quebec‐based subsidiary and manufacturer of generic drugs.


Frédéric D. Tremblay
Director, Public Relations and Social Media
450 646‐9611, ext. 1400

Source: The Jean Coutu (PJC) Group Inc.