Fair Food Passes Inspection

by Kelly Choate on August 15, 2011 at 6:00 am

Fairgoers usually visit the fairgrounds hungry, but many people don’t think about food safety.

The Zanesville-Muskingum County Health Department inspects every food stand at the fair.  Public Health Sanitarian Ed Shaffer said the frequency of the inspections depends on the size of the facility and the risk factors of the food being served.

"Throughout the fair, we inspect the 70 or so food stands that are set up throughout the fairgrounds just to make sure that the food is being heated at the proper temperatures and people are washing their hands when appropriate," said Shaffer.  "We want to know that they’re providing a safe food product."

Shaffer said all of the vendors have been following the guidelines.  Matt Russel organizes the Coburn Church booth that prepares between 250 and 300 dinners each day of the fair.  He said he’s very familiar with the inspection process.

"We kind of know from past experiences over the years how to do it, and we might have a few questions here or there, but we seem to have a pretty good idea," said Russel.

Shaffer said he recommends topping off a night at the fair with a piece of homemade pie.