Food Safety

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Food Safety at Home

Have you ever had food poisoning? Chances are you have and thought it was the flu. Every year in Toronto, hundreds of people suffer from food poisoning and most cases occur from eating at home.

Picture of a teenaged boy experiencing stomach illnessWhat is food poisoning?

Food poisoning, also called foodborne illness, is illness caused by eating and drinking contaminated food or water (this includes contaminated ice).

The most common causes of food poisoning are infectious organisms or their toxins. These organisms include bacteria, viruses and parasites.

Food poisoning organisms and their toxins do not change the way food looks, smells or tastes, but can cause any of the following symptoms: 

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain and cramping
  • Fever


The following are food handling practices that may lead to food poisoning:

  1. Poor food handling hygiene, such as improper hand washing
  2. Dirty utensils or work surfaces
  3. Cross contamination of raw and ready-to-eat food
  4. Improper cooking and reheating of food
  5. Improper cooling of hazardous food
  6. Improper defrosting of food

Home Food Safety Information

A man and a woman preparing food in a home kitchen

Food Preparation

Proper cooking is the best way to make sure your food is safe to eat. Learn cooking tips that will help keep your meal delicious and safe. 

A plate with food, served with a fork and knife

Serving Food

Whether you are cleaning up after a weeknight meal or packing lunches to go, packaging food properly is a key step in home food safety.