Bring your own food if you’re concerned about the safety of food purchased at an airport. Most certainly much food eaten at airports is safe but do you know how often inspectors visit these places? Not often enough, and when they do, in most cases, everyone knows ahead of time, and they’re all prepared. Garbage cans are washed, gloves are donned, and no official saw a cook tasting the soup with the spoon, or reusing a utensil after it was dropped on the floor. No one saw the rat droppings, the unwashed, moldy vegetables turned into soup, or found the tuna at room-temperature. No one saw the food preparer use the same gloves to cut raw chicken and then slice bread.
According to the Center for Disease Control, there are an estimated 76 million cases of food-borne illness each year in the United States. “Most aren’t traced to the source and doing so is even harder with airport restaurants because customers scatter,” said Dean Davidson of the Food and Drug Administration.
Reports show that grab-and-go coolers often don’t keep sandwiches and salads cold enough to stop dangerous pathogens, so if you do bring your own food, be sure it is cool enough or hot enough to keep bugs at bay, or you’ll be tossing your cookies in the plane lavatory.