Bbq burgers

The FSA is warning consumers to eat safely if they are having barbecues this bank holiday weekend

A new food hygiene consumer campaign by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) is urging people to pre-cook meat or poultry before throwing it on the barbecue.

Ahead of the upcoming bank holiday weekend, FSA CEO Catherine Brown warned that food poisoning was “a real risk at barbecues”, and urged the public to take extra care when preparing meat.

Research by the FSA found that one in five people (21%) believed they had fallen ill due to something they ate at a barbecue, while 94% said they had made at least one risky food hygiene mistake when cooking barbecue food.

The agency has published a list of barbecue cooking tips for those planning to cook al fresco this weekend, including refraining from washing raw meat, avoiding cross contamination by storing raw meat separately, and ensuring that cooked meat is hot all the way through.

It also warned those using disposable BBQs that they take longer to heat up and cook meat, and said pre-cooking meat in the oven before finishing it off on the BBQ for flavour would help avoid picking up nasty food poisoning bugs.

“We are reminding people to take good care of their families and friends by paying attention to simple food safety rules,” said Brown.