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USDA: Pink Pork Ok To Eat

USDA says cook meat to 145degrees Fahrenheit, then let it rest for 3 minutes

USDA says meat cooked to 145degrees Fahrenheit, then let rest for 3 minutes is safe to eat

The United States Department of Agriculture today announced that cooking pork to only 145 degrees Fahrenheit instead of the previously recommended 160 degrees Fahrenheit is safe, if the cooking is followed by a 3 minute “rest”. This means that it is now safe to cook all cuts of red meat to the lower temperature, provided it is allowed to rest for three minutes before carving or eating, but it does not apply to ground meats.

The safe temperature for ground meats stays at 160 degrees Fahrenheit, while the temperature for poultry remains at 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Elizabeth Hagen, the USDA’s under secretary for food safety said that “With a single temperature for all whole cuts of meat and uniform 3-minute stand time, we believe it will be much easier for consumers to remember and result in safer food preparation. Now there will only be 3 numbers to remember: 145 for whole meats, 160 for ground meats and 165 for all poultry.”

The USDA added that they believe that cooking red meats to 145 degrees Fahrenheit with the added three minute of rest “will result in a product that is both microbiologically safe and at its best quality.”

The temperatures should be measured at the thickest part of the meat, and using a meat thermometer. Officials also added that you should not rely on the color of the meat, because even if the meat is pink, it is safe to eat provided it has been heated to the correct temperature, and then allowed to rest for the three minutes. The rest allows the temperature to equalize throughout the meat. It should be noted that meat may change colour due to added ingredients, or the cooking method . For example, cured pork will remain pink after cooking.

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