If you’re looking for somebody who can tell you all about the risks some foods can pose to your health, then Bill Marler is your man. He’s the managing partner at Seattle law firm Marler Clark and he’s been involved in food safety cases since 1993. Indeed in that year he won a settlement of $15.6 million from Jack in the Box over a case of E. coli suffered by a nine-year-old child. Now read on to find out what Marler says he will not eat.
4. Pre-washed and pre-cut produce
Marler points out that fruit and vegetables which have been extensively prepared before display on the store shelves or cold cabinet are more likely to have come into contact with contamination. And that could result in food containing listeria, a bacterium which thrives in cool conditions. Listeria can cause severe food poisoning and even death in vulnerable people.
3. Unpasteurized milk and juices
Most milk and juices sold in the U.S. are pasteurized, but unpasteurized products are available. Pasteurization involves the heating of liquids to a high enough temperature to kill bugs. If you drink unpasteurized fruit juices or milk, there is the risk of contracting E. Coli. There are various of E. Coli strains in the wild and some can cause acute illness.
2. Undercooked steaks and burgers
Some people like their steak bloody, but that does mean there is a risk of food poisoning if the meat has been prepared using the needle tenderizing technique. This involves stabbing the steak with needles and can transfer bacteria from the exterior to the interior of the cut. In that case, and always with burgers, Marler advises that the meat should be heated right through to 160°F.
1. Uncooked sprouts
Raw, or even partially-cooked sprouts, such as those from radishes, mung beans or alfalfa can contain harmful bacteria including E. coli and salmonella. Speaking to the BottomLineInc website Marler said, “There have been too many outbreaks to not pay attention to the risk of sprout contamination. Those are products that I just don’t eat at all.”