Experts Warn "People Could Die".
A sudden increase of 'made-at-home' meals are being sold on sites such as Facebook and it is sparking food safety concerns that could jeopardize buyer's health and safety.
During COVID-19, a boom of home deliveries has surged, leading to many ‘would-be’ chefs to start cooking in their home kitchen and selling their culinary delights online.
It is a feasible and often convenient method of finding ready to eat meals close to home, which can be delivered or picked up. The benefit of using these sites is that the costs are often drastically cheaper than using an official meal delivery service.
However, many of these sellers do not have the proper permits or meet the required food safety standards to be selling food products.
Food Safety Council spokeswoman Lydia Buchtmann has stated,
“Even though you can’t get COVID-19 from food, there is still a risk when delivering food, as well as a risk of food poisoning”.
Ms Butchmann has urged social media giants to put in restrictions for these types of sales and only to allow registered food businesses to sell via these market places.
Food safety expert Julian Cox has highlighted the danger of preparing food in unregulated kitchens and the possible health risks that can arise.
“Depending on the type of organism or toxin associated with the food there can be little or no symptoms, through to gastroenteritis, to potentially severe complications, including death,” Professor Cox said.
Facebook has imposed restrictions in the past for their online marketplace on things such as event tickets, healthcare products and animals – but has not placed any such measure on the distribution of food products.
Such food products you may regularly see on their marketplace include
- Raw sausages
- Baked goods
- Spring rolls
Food poisoning has the possibility of killing people and can be traced through the improper handling of food preparation and storage.
The Food and Safety Council has stated not to purchase any home made-meals-online and to instead, support local businesses which market their menus online.