The Influence of Time Use, Risk Factors and Occupation on Meal Preparers' Use of Food Thermometers

M.Taylor Rhodes, Fred Kuchler

Biblographic citation: Food Protection Trends, vol. 40, no. 1, pp. 16-28, Jan 2020

Volume 40, Issue 1: Pages 16–28

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This study uses the 2014–2016 Eating and Health Module from the American Time Use Survey to examine factors associated with thermometer use by at-home meal preparers. It also examines the relationship between employment of meal preparers in foodservice and food thermometer use at home. Overall, 14% of at-home meal preparers use a food thermometer during a typical week when preparing meals that require temperature verification. Logit regression estimates indicate that male meal preparers use thermometers more than females do, married preparers use thermometers more than unmarried at-home meal preparers do, young adults (age 18–34) use thermometers more than older adults do, non-Hispanic meal preparers use thermometers more than Hispanic meal preparers do, and meal preparers who spend over 2 hours on daily food preparation use thermometers more than those who spend less time on food preparation and meal preparers in larger households are more likely to use food thermometers than those in smaller households, and meal preparers who judged themselves to be in poor physical health were less likely than others to use a food thermometer. Lastly, thermometer usage was higher for meal preparers working in food service-related jobs than for others, although more than three-quarters of these food service workers did not use a thermometer when preparing at-home meals that require temperature verification.

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