Practice Trick or Treat safety

LANSING — The Michigan Department of Agriculture is reminding parents to trick-or-treat with food safety in mind this Halloween.

Parents should follow these quick trick-or-treat tips:

• Tell children not to accept, and especially not eat, anything that isn’t commercially wrapped.

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

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

• Parents should wash all fresh fruit thoroughly and inspect it for holes, including small punctures. Fruit should be cut open before allowing kids to eat it.

• Some Halloween treats may trigger allergic reactions. Read the complete label and ingredient list of products before interpreting it is safe for all to eat.

• To help prevent children from snacking while they’re out trick-or-treating, and before parents have inspected the treats, give them a snack or light meal before they go.

• If juice or cider is served to children at Halloween parties, make sure it is pasteurized or otherwise treated to destroy harmful bacteria. Juice or cider that has not been treated will say so on the label.

• As always, proper hand washing is essential to food safety. Remind kids to wash their hands before eating.

LANSING — The Michigan Department of Agriculture is reminding parents to trick-or-treat with food safety in mind this Halloween.

Parents should follow these quick trick-or-treat tips:

• Tell children not to accept, and especially not eat, anything that isn’t commercially wrapped.

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

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

• Parents should wash all fresh fruit thoroughly and inspect it for holes, including small punctures. Fruit should be cut open before allowing kids to eat it.

• Some Halloween treats may trigger allergic reactions. Read the complete label and ingredient list of products before interpreting it is safe for all to eat.

• To help prevent children from snacking while they’re out trick-or-treating, and before parents have inspected the treats, give them a snack or light meal before they go.

• If juice or cider is served to children at Halloween parties, make sure it is pasteurized or otherwise treated to destroy harmful bacteria. Juice or cider that has not been treated will say so on the label.

• As always, proper hand washing is essential to food safety. Remind kids to wash their hands before eating.

• Remember, when in doubt, throw it out!

For more information on food safety, visit one of the following Web sites: www.michigan.gov/foodsafety, www.foodsafety.gov, or www.fightbac.org.

Remember, when in doubt, throw it out!

For more information on food safety, visit one of the following Web sites: www.michigan.gov/foodsafety, www.foodsafety.gov, or www.fightbac.org.