Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 17-07-2011, 09:42   #1
Registered User
 
Krakato's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Boat: 1998 PDQ 36 Capella Classic
Posts: 69
Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

I just returned from a week long trek in Honduras in which our whole team ended up sick for about a day and a half in spite of taking all the normal precautions. This got me to thinking about food safety in general in the E. Caribbean (where we plan sail upon retirement).

When you are traveling from one island to the next, do folks get sick on occasions from food/water or does this mainly happen only when entering the overall area? (I'm curious if it is just one bug out there for the area or many.)

Anyone have any ideas on how good the food/water safety is on the islands?

Any comments appreciated!

Cheers,
Mike
__________________

__________________
Krakato is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 10:04   #2
Senior Cruiser
 
Blue Stocking's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: St. Georges, Bda
Boat: Rhodes Reliant 41ft
Posts: 4,114
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

Don't fall in after eating the bread pudding. That stuff has the density of lead.
__________________

__________________
so many projects--so little time !!
Blue Stocking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 10:35   #3
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: north carolina
Boat: command yachtsdouglas32
Posts: 3,113
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

I have been sick only one time while traveling the world but I have gotten parasitc things in my tummy many times as the folks in places like the carribean will leave food setting out for hours even days at a time and I insist on eating like most of them do...As there is little refrigeration certian foods should be skipped if you cant see it before its cooked and all fruits and vegatables should be at least peeled if not avoided if you didnt pick it yourself(some folks dont wash their hands)I went about town one night after arriving in one of my favorite countries looking for a man I had bought Jerk chicken from many times but could not find him..I bought from anouther man instead..I didnt get sick but man did that bird ever stink..was the worst thing I think I ever smelled but I learned a lesson ..dont ever let these fine folks know that you are in transit because that is a good time to off load some less than desirable food products on unsuspecting people. good luck and dont drink the water DVC
__________________
tropicalescape is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 10:48   #4
Senior Cruiser
 
osirissail's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: A real life Zombie from FL
Boat: Gulfstar 53 - Osiris
Posts: 5,416
Images: 2
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

Having eaten my way from Puerto Rico to Trinidad several times both up and down island, I have never encountered any "bad" food with one exception. That was in Trinidad when I ate in an East Indian Restaurant that was not well patronized. Since they use yoghurt in the sauces, I suspect it had been left out exposed in a tray in the kitchen for too long. One of the little guidelines I use is to eat what most other people in the place are eating, as that food is being rapidly cycled through fresh.
- - I do not eat from the local roadside carts or private homes that BBQ chicken outside. I have had some terrible tasting food but not anything that would make you sick.
- - In all the eastern Caribbean Islands there are supermarkets which sell what we call the "normal North American/European" food stuffs. These tend to be "pricey" as they are imported from North America or Europe. Also there are the local's markets where most of the food is packaged in cans or boxes and considerably less expensive. Bottle water, beer and rum are available everywhere. Soft drinks are also quite safe and available everywhere.
- - One of the main problems in the eastern Caribbean is too many good places to eat. You need some rough passages between islands to help loose the weight you put on.
__________________
osirissail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 11:07   #5
Senior Cruiser
 
Cheechako's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Skagit City, WA
Posts: 19,352
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

I had no problems with food in the Carribean islands. Bought from trucks and local markets etc. Wash things well. I never used the water , had a water maker. Never heard of water issues either . You do need to be smart about where you eat out as Jedi said.... although I loved the places that killed and grilled the chicken in t he back yard! In the West, Mexico and south is a whole 'nuther story though....
__________________
Cheechako is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 11:21   #6
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,767
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

always sniff the air around your potential eatery--if foul--RUN.. if not--EAT
zeehag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 11:38   #7
Registered User
 
Unicorn Dreams's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Clear Lake Marine Services - Seabrook, Texas
Boat: Gulfstar, Mark II Ketch, 43'
Posts: 2,359
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

Never had any problems eating or drinking water in the Caribbean.
Sometimes people will get sick because ot the change in cuisine and the new spices they are using..
__________________
Formerly Santana
The winds blow true,The skies stay blue,
Everyday is a good day for SAILING!!!!
Unicorn Dreams is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 11:47   #8
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: north carolina
Boat: command yachtsdouglas32
Posts: 3,113
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

Quote:
Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
always sniff the air around your potential eatery--if foul--RUN.. if not--EAT
I know thats right..like those little stands that sell the cocktails in Mexico..If you find a good one.. very well..if not DVC
__________________
tropicalescape is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-07-2011, 11:56   #9
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,767
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

buying fish and shrimp in mexico is a fine art--if is iced--DO NOT BUY...only OLD fish and shrimps are iced. new ones are without ice. old ones do not make it home to cook in less than one block of walking, and are only good for catching bad catfish or crabs.
zeehag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18-07-2011, 12:26   #10
Registered User
 
Matt sachs's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: East Tennessee
Boat: 1989 50 ft Roberts
Posts: 859
Images: 18
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

If you ever drop anchor in Baseterre St. Kitts, you must visit Mrs. Moore in the main shopping square. I eat there every time I visit. Her saltfish is the absolute best. Be carfeful, the hot sauce is serious stuff.
You can still get bottled water on the island but I have never had an issue drinking the local water.
__________________
Matt sachs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18-07-2011, 12:55   #11
Long Range Cruiser
 
MarkJ's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Australian living on "Sea Life" currently in England.
Boat: Beneteau 393 "Sea Life"
Posts: 12,828
Images: 25
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

Quote:
Originally Posted by mhward1337 View Post
Anyone have any ideas on how good the food/water safety is on the islands?
I always put in 30 mils of bleach to each 220 litre water tank, and a water conditioner.

Every country in the world except the very Western 1St World has absolutely lousy personal hygiene.

That means they do NOT wash their hands after going to the toilet. Or adequately.

The abattoir here in Grenada is such a joke I nearly took a photo of it and the meat market next door would also have someone laughing before they fall down smote by Ecoli.

At the restaurants here I have been amazed when people order a burger the wait staff ask how do they want it cooked! And people say Medium. Minced/Ground beef MUST be fully cooked as all of it has been exposed to the air. Only steaks etc can be cooked medium or rare. So I have seen many people here eating burgers with raw meat in the middle of the patty.

I never eat from street vendors here, or in any other part of the world. Its just not worth the risk. Where does the street vendor go to the toilet? Where does he wash his hands after?

I go to restaurants that have lots of people in them and look clean. I inspect supermarkets and really inspect refrigerated or fresh food carefully.
Its so easy to buy good quality frozen meat imported from clean countries... but watch for signs of freezer burn or cycle defrosting.

To get sick badly in some places means getting a medical facility thats not up to you expectations. And, no your medical insurance won't fly you home because you may be infectious!

My advice is to take care of your stomach. You can't see what goes in.

If you want to try the local delacy of snake or grasshoppers or toasted cockroaches do it.... but do it in a propper restaurant. If its really weird and whacko there will be some tourist place set up just to nail your wallet, but at least you will be safe




Yum! But did he wash after potty?



Mark
__________________
Notes on a Circumnavigation.
OurLifeAtSea.com

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
MarkJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18-07-2011, 17:03   #12
Registered User
 
rognvald's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Summer: In the land of Wooly Mammoths
Boat: Pearson 34-II
Posts: 2,252
Images: 2
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

MarkJ posted excellent advice for sanitation outside Western countries. But,after having spent much time in Latin America, I would add one extra tip and that is when you buy produce from the local markets where human waste is often used in fields as fertilizer for crops, soak your produce in a large bowl filled with bottled water and add a couple drops of iodine. Allow it to sit about ten minutes and then rinse it again with bottled water before consuming. I ate strictly from local vendors for a year and never became ill. I would also like to mention, I have never experienced such abysmal sanitation in public restrooms as I experienced throughout Mexico. Culture shock is an understatement. Good luck and Bon Apetit, Ron
__________________
rognvald is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18-07-2011, 18:55   #13
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,767
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

has to be a solution other than iodine. too many are deathly allergic to iodine. at least e coli has a medicine to cure it. anaphylaxis does not .
zeehag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18-07-2011, 19:06   #14
֍֎֍֎֍֎֍֎֍֎

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 13,033
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

"We estimate that foodborne diseases cause approximately 76 million illnesses, 325,000 hospitalizations, and 5,000 deaths in the United States each year. Known pathogens account for an estimated 14 million illnesses, 60,000 hospitalizations, and 1,800 deaths."

From the US CDC web site. Eating and drinking is dangerous business.

__________________
hellosailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18-07-2011, 20:08   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Kelowna , British Columbia
Boat: Corbin 39 Pilot House
Posts: 214
Re: Food Safety In The Eastern Caribbean

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
I always put in 30 mils of bleach to each 220 litre water tank, and a water conditioner.

Every country in the world except the very Western 1St World has absolutely lousy personal hygiene.

That means they do NOT wash their hands after going to the toilet. Or adequately.

The abattoir here in Grenada is such a joke I nearly took a photo of it and the meat market next door would also have someone laughing before they fall down smote by Ecoli.

At the restaurants here I have been amazed when people order a burger the wait staff ask how do they want it cooked! And people say Medium. Minced/Ground beef MUST be fully cooked as all of it has been exposed to the air. Only steaks etc can be cooked medium or rare. So I have seen many people here eating burgers with raw meat in the middle of the patty.

I never eat from street vendors here, or in any other part of the world. Its just not worth the risk. Where does the street vendor go to the toilet? Where does he wash his hands after?

I go to restaurants that have lots of people in them and look clean. I inspect supermarkets and really inspect refrigerated or fresh food carefully.
Its so easy to buy good quality frozen meat imported from clean countries... but watch for signs of freezer burn or cycle defrosting.

To get sick badly in some places means getting a medical facility thats not up to you expectations. And, no your medical insurance won't fly you home because you may be infectious!

My advice is to take care of your stomach. You can't see what goes in.

If you want to try the local delacy of snake or grasshoppers or toasted cockroaches do it.... but do it in a propper restaurant. If its really weird and whacko there will be some tourist place set up just to nail your wallet, but at least you will be safe




Yum! But did he wash after potty?




Mark
Mark! don't be such a cry baby. After living in the Carib for almost three years I and my my wife with two children never got sick. We only eat at street vendors because that's all what we could afford. Only drink the local tap water and occasionally when hiking high up on some of the islands I would drink from the rivers. When living in the DR the only meat we bought came from the local butcher. You can't go wrong with the meat that came from the animal that was slaughter five minutes earlier and that was the best meat we ever ate as everything there is organic. Having my fridge now under renovations I only eat the local produce here in Grenada. Haven't been to any store in over three weeks, surviving only on what I can buy on the market in St Georges on Saturday morning. The only exception is when occasionally from time to time will go and have a beer or five at the Tiki bar with my British and Australian friends.
__________________

__________________
henryk is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
Caribbean, eastern caribbean, food, safety

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Vacuum Food Sealer - Critique My Idea DiverChick71 Provisioning: Food & Drink 51 25-06-2012 13:49
Caribbean Gold Bottom Paint rja Construction, Maintenance & Refit 4 14-07-2011 23:25
Crew Available: Couple Available for Atlantic Crossing from UK / Med to Caribbean Between Sept & Nov tom1986 Crew Archives 0 11-07-2011 16:33



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 03:49.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.