Don’t pick nose and get finger out of ear; top food safety tips for Indian street food vendors

The millions of food vendors peddling tasty morsels from roadside stalls and rickshaws across India have long been an emblem of the country’s boisterous, chaotic spirit.

But now, Indian officials have a stern message for these often-unregulated roadside chefs: Wash your hands after using the toilet. get.that.finger.out.of.your.ear.airplaneDon’t sneeze into the food. And, above all, please don’t pick your nose.

Launched by India’s Food Safety and Standards Authority and the National Association of Street Vendors of India, the seminar offered a primer on safe drinking water and disposable gloves, along with a list of food-handling do’s and don’ts.

Number one on the forbidden list? Don’t pick your nose. Also banned are cleaning one’s ears, smoking while handling food and spitting into the wash basin or sink.

The goal of the program is to create “safe zones” in popular areas, but is it really possible to sanitize street food in India, where suspending any fastidious concern for hygiene has always been part of the deal?

Nose stretcher alert: Whole Foods explains why it stopped selling raw milk in Florida

Whole Foods Market has terrible food safety advice, blames consumers for getting sick, sells raw milk in some stores, offers up fairytales about organic and natural foods, and their own CEO says they sell a bunch of junk.

Whole Foods in Florida has officially dropped raw milk from its shelves. Until Thursday, Whole Foods market sold raw milk with a pet food label. Human drinkers bought it for their personal consumption.

During an interview published yesterday by the Miami New Times, Russ Benblatt, Whole Foods regional marketing director for Florida, said,

“This was a decision that was made here at the regional level. I can’t get into too many details, but it was purely a business decision to stop selling the raw milk, and I can’t get into the specifics of it. … We made a decision to stop selling it as a pet food. We’ve never sold it for human consumption. … We’re a grocery store we try not to get involved in politics. … If we’re involved in politics then I’m not aware of it. We’re not involved in any lobbying or political action committees in the state of Florida.”

Just a grocery store. Uh-huh. There isn’t a foodie cause Whole Foods wouldn’t embrace to peddle a few more dollars worth of crap.

UK Subway worker filmed putting lettuce leaves up his nose in sandwich shop… before putting them back on display

A sandwich bar worker was sacked after footage of him stuffing lettuce leaves up his nose – before he put them back in their serving tray – was posted on YouTube.

Except I can’t find the video, so there’s just this crappy picture (if someone has it, please send along the url).

The Daily Mail reports that Richard Shannon, who also put salad leaves in his mouth before spitting them out, was arrested after a ‘disgusted’ customer recognised the 22-year-old on the Internet.

Shannon was arrested after the irate woman went to a branch of Subway in Brownhills, West Midlands, and hurled a chair at him, Walsall Magistrates’ Court heard today.

The defendant admitted a single charge of contaminating or interfering with goods with intent to cause economic loss, alarm or injury.

He claimed the incident, filmed by a friend on a mobile phone early last year, had been a prank and that the lettuce, which went back into a tray used to make customers’ sandwiches, had been discarded.

Snot appeal

I’m writing this while flying to Boston and baby Sorenne just let out three sneezes and a fart. Cloth diapers make wonderful spit rags, and I usually have one in my back pocket or over my shoulder. Last week I discovered another use – to control my draining eyes and nose while sitting through a meeting.

Which raises the question: is it bad manners to blow your nose at the table, even if you’re not using your napkin?

Helena Echlin of Chow magazine responds:

According to Peter Post, director of the Emily Post Institute and an allergy sufferer, you should leave the dinner table to blow your nose if possible. … Blowing your nose in public is acceptable, if not very charming. But don’t do it at the table. When you blow your nose in other situations—on the subway, for instance—people can edge away. At the table they’re stuck next to you and your germs. Though they don’t have to see your snot, they may be able to hear it when you snuffle, and that can be almost as bad. …

According to Elizabeth Bernstein, a San Francisco writer, “If a guy blew his nose in his napkin on a date, it would be pretty much a deal-breaker.”