Elderly neighbours and relations – preparing food

It’s great to help out those in the community like elderly neighbours and relations that can’t help themselves. When preparing food for the vulnerable, such as elderly people, be extra careful with your food safety and be aware of the risk of Listeria see more advice about preparing food for the elderly. You might also want to order an extra dish when you get home delivery. Check if the person has any allergies or specific dietary requirements. When you drop off the food let the person know it is coming so it isn’t left on the doorstep and observe social distancing of at least 1.5 metres. Make sure the person knows how to defrost any frozen food in the fridge or microwave  and how to reheat the food all the way through to 75 C in their microwave, in the oven or on the stove top. They should put any leftovers straight in the fridge once they have stopped steaming and use or freeze within 24 hours.  You might want to buy them a fridge thermometer and   meat thermometer when you are next shopping.  You can also shop on their behalf or help them access supermarket home delivery which is now available for the vulnerable. Charities such as Meals on Wheels and Foodbank can also help supply food for those that can’t get out.

See also our advice on taking food to elderly friends and relatives in aged care