Money & Business

Food Safety Group Tries Fresh Approach With Recipe Style Guide

By / Mar 11, 2019 (mphillips007/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

The Partnership for Food Safety Education took inspiration from the Associated Press Stylebook in creating its just-released style guide for recipes.

Could the secret to food safety be better recipes? That’s what the Partnership for Food Safety Education (PFSE) thinks—and it has recent research to prove it. Armed with that information, the group recently announced a style guide for recipe authors.

The Safe Recipe Style Guide, announced at the PFSE annual meeting this month, is intended to be, essentially, the Associated Press Stylebook of recipes. It’s goal is to encourage consistency in how recipes describe food-handling best practices to improve food safety.

“Our challenge was to figure out how to get these simple instructions incorporated into more recipes,” said PFSE Executive Director Shelley Feist in a news release. “That’s when we came up with the idea to provide food editors with a recipe-writing style guide—just like the AP Stylebook—only this guide would provide easy ways to incorporate food safety instructions.”

Emphasis on easy: The guide is only two pages long. One page features recommended text for instructions on food temperature, hand washing, cross-contamination, and produce handling, The other provides safe cooking guidelines for different types of food, including most common kinds of meat, as well as leftovers. (Your leftovers should be heated to 165 degrees Fahrenheit, in case you were thinking of using up last weekend’s meatloaf for dinner tonight.)

A 2016 report titled “Recipe Modification Improves Food Safety Practices During Cooking of Poultry,‌” published in the Journal of Food Protection, was among the studies that directly inspired the style guide.

The guide is simple, but uptake might be harder. The group is ready for that. Having received funding for the project from the Food Marketing Institute Foundation, PFSE plans to work with the publishing industry to get the changes added to recipes.

“We will be meeting with prominent food publications and speaking at food industry conferences in the coming months,” Feist said. “In addition, we have a team in place that can review and update existing recipes, to bring them into compliance with these important new food safety guidelines.”

One thing that might help in that department: Food journalists worked directly with the partnership in creating the guide.

The resulting standard might just make cooking in your kitchen a little bit safer.

Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is the social media journalist for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. More »

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