Canadian Food Inspection Agency

Canadian Food Inspection Agency

October 25, 2005 10:43 ET

FOOD SAFETY TIPS FOR HALLOWEEN

Attention: Food/Beverage Editor, Health/Medical Editor, Lifestyle Editor, Media Editor, News Editor OTTAWA/ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Oct. 25, 2005) - Halloween is a time of fun for children. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is providing a few simple tips to parents to ensure that their children's holiday is a safe one.

TIPS FOR PARENTS

* Children shouldn't snack while they're out trick-or-treating before parents have a chance to inspect the goodies. To help prevent children from munching, give them a snack or light meal before they go--don't send them out on an empty stomach.

* Tell children not to accept--and, especially, not to eat--anything that isn't commercially wrapped.

* When children bring their treats home, discard any homemade candy or baked goods. Parents of young children should also remove any choking hazards such as gum, peanuts, hard candies or small toys.

* Wash all fresh fruit thoroughly, inspect it for holes, including small punctures, and cut it open before allowing children to eat it. Remember, when in doubt, throw it out.

* Inspect commercially wrapped treats for signs of tampering, such as an unusual appearance or discolouration, tiny pinholes, or tears in wrappers. Throw away anything that looks suspicious.

* Some Halloween treats may trigger allergic reactions in susceptible individuals. For more information, please visit CFIA's Web site at the following address: http://inspection.gc.ca/english/corpaffr/foodfacts/orale.shtml

* In the past, konjac mini-cup jelly products have been known to pose a choking hazard as they may become lodged in the throat and may be difficult to remove due to their consistency. Individual konjac jellies are about the size of a coffee creamer, with rounded edges and usually contain a flavoured centre enclosed in a shell of konjac jelly (also conjac, konuyaku or glucomannan). These products are traditionally manufactured in South-east Asia and sold under various brand names. The comparable products which are now available on the Canadian market have been reformulated into a softer product which does not appear to pose a choking risk. While the original mini-cup jellies with konjac should have been removed from the market, it is possible that some may have been brought into the country by travellers from countries where the original product may still be for sale.

* If juice or cider is served to children at Halloween parties, make sure it is pasteurized or otherwise treated to destroy harmful bacteria. For more information, please visit CFIA's Web site at: http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/corpaffr/foodfacts/juicee.shtml.

For more information about street-proofing for trick-or-treaters, visit the following Web site:

* Health Canada - Have a Safe and Spooky Halloween -
http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hl-vs/securit/sports/hal/index_e.html

For information on receiving recalls by electronic mail, or for other food safety facts, visit the CFIA Web site at www.inspection.gc.ca.

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Media Inquiries:
CFIA Media Relations: (613) 228-6682

October 2005 /For further information: For more information on food safety, visit the CFIA Web site at
www.inspection.gc.ca.

/ IN: FOOD, HEALTH

Contact Information

  • Media Relations, Canadian Food Inspection Agency
    Primary Phone: 613-228-6682