A report from The Food Safety Authority is highlighting a trend to serve undercooked minced beef burgers.
The FSAI is reminding caterers and restaurants to cook the meat fully to avoid food poisoning.
In Ireland, 3% of raw minced beef is known to be contaminated with a harmful type of E Coli that can cause kidney failure.
Children under five years of age and the elderly are particularly vulnerable to this type of E Coli.
A published factsheet advises that minced beef burgers should be temperature tested prior to serving.
According to Dr Pamela Byrne, CEO, FSAI, during the summer months, minced beef burgers are a highly popular go-to food for many people, however, food safety should never be compromised for speed or to cater for trends in consumer taste.
“There should be no compromise on food safety. We have had people become ill due to a serious food poisoning outbreak associated with undercooked beef burgers in a catering establishment.
"Food service businesses must have a food safety management system in place which identifies the hazards and outlines the critical control points to ensure food safety.
"Cooking food to the correct temperature is the critical control point for serving safe minced beef burgers. Regular checks should be carried out on the core temperature of minced beef burgers using a probe thermometer, as colour alone is not a reliable indicator.
"Consumers also need to ensure that when they are cooking minced beef burgers at home, that they are cooked until they are piping hot all the way through. Given the serious health risks associated with consuming undercooked minced beef burgers, this advice should not be taken lightly,” said Dr Byrne.
- Digital Desk