Last Updated: 19 Aug 2016 4:08pm
If you're aiming to round off the summer holidays with a Bank Holiday barbecue this weekend, Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council's Food & Safety Team and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) have some good advice to help make it a safe success.
With gourmet burgers in restaurants becoming increasingly popular some people may be tempted to serve their guests with burgers that are pink in the middle. But a burger is not like steak. Steak can be served rare because any contamination on the surface of the meat is destroyed when the steak is seared on the outside. Burgers are made of minced meat, so any bacteria, on the outside of the whole piece of meat, are mixed up throughout burgers when the meat is minced. If bacteria are mixed into the middle of the burger and it isn't cooked all the way through, the bacteria can survive and cause food poisoning. That's why a burger should be thoroughly cooked all the way through.
So, this Barbecue Weekend (27-29 August), rain or shine, the FSA is reminding everybody to:
* cook burgers so they are steaming hot all the way through, no matter how good quality or
expensive the meat
* check that none of it is pink and that any juices run clear, and
* avoid cross contamination by storing raw meat separately before cooking, using different utensils, plates and chopping boards for raw and cooked food.
Councillor David Lettington, Member for Street Scene and Environment Services, said: "It's important that we do our part to make sure that people know how to handle and cook food safely for themselves and for their families. We're proud to be keeping people in Tonbridge and Malling safe and well by being part of this campaign to spread the word – if you want your barbecue to be remembered for the right reasons, follow this advice on beating the barbecue bugs!"
Find out more about the FSA's top tips at: food.gov.uk/burgers