Summer Food Safety
Hot summer days are here! During this time of year we often gas up our grill and enjoy outdoor gatherings. But as temperatures climb, so does the risk of food poisoning. Here are a few things to keep in mind for food safety this summer.
- Keep the grills and coolers clean. Many of us overlook cleaning our grills and coolers throughout the summer. Frequently scrub and clean these items with hot soapy water to stop bacteria from spreading to your food.
- Keep food out of the temperature “danger zone.” Bacteria grow rapidly when food is stored between 40°F and 140° Avoid this danger zone by keeping your hot foods hot and your cold foods cold. Ice packs and coolers are essential in the heat and perishable foods should not be unrefrigerated for more than 2 hours. This time shortens to one hour if it’s above 90°F outside. Consider keeping a refrigerator thermometer in your cooler to help you keep check!
- Marinate meat in the refrigerator and don’t reuse dressings that have come in contact with raw meats.
- Keep hand sanitizer handy. You don’t always have the ability to wash your hands while enjoying the great outdoors, so keep hand sanitizer handy to keep yourself and others safe.
- Don’t prep meat and produce using the same tools or surfaces. These foods need separate cutting boards and utensils to prevent cross contamination. Following these tips will help you enjoy tasty, safe food in the great outdoors.
For more information on proper internal cooking temperatures, check out the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Grilling recommendations here: http://www.eatright.org/~/media/homefoodsafety/multimedia/downloads/safegrillingguide.ashx