Our resident non-aging television personality and food safety dude, Rob Mancini, who did a MSc with me all those years ago, writes that food safety professionals have been using a number of different mediums to get the word out on food safety.
One such medium are blogs, like the one you are reading now, using current press releases to disseminate information to the masses. Others use eclectic marketing campaigns, some which are validated others not, radio, Internet, and TV.
While I am a proponent in using media to get information out in a rapid, relevant manner, TV reality shows can be misleading and often times food safety takes a back seat to sensation.
TV reality shows are a fine balance between science and fiction….. it’s about the ratings and trying to get a second season. Prior to embarking on my journey with Kitchen Crimes back in 2005, I was bombarded with emails from my colleagues not to sensationalize the facts and use weird gadgets to uncover dirt, grime, or whatever was lurking in the kitchen. Except hat doesn’t get ratings, sometimes we have to sensationalize and grasp peoples’ attention.
But it has to be done right. At least it gets people talking and thinking about food safety.
The BBC Food Detective show was peppered with a number of food safety fails including no thermometers to verify internal food temps. Really, no thermometer….. something so simple that can literally save someone’s life. As a society, we do a horrible job in food safety communication, just look at all of the inconsistencies found on the Internet, in food regulations, provincially and internationally, and in the media.