Hope For Hunger FB
May 10, 2020
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6 Food Safety Tips For Your Next Picnic

Author: Administrator
Planning a picnic? Then you'll want to take a minute to brush up on picnic food safety tips. When air temperatures rise above 45 degrees Fahrenheit, protein-based foods can become a breeding ground for bacteria. Unless you want to serve food poisoning at your outdoor gathering, it's best to keep the following food safety tips in mind.

1. Make sure to transport food in the proper containers. While non-perishable food can be easily packed in a brown paper bag or cardboard box, foods such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, mayonnaise or creamy dressings are very perishable and should be packed in an insulated cooler with ice packs to keep food below 45 degrees F. These perishable foods should not be left unchilled for more than 1 hour, and should never sit in direct sunlight.

2. Always wash your hands thoroughly before you begin cooking, and again after touching raw meat, fish, or chicken. Wet napkins or hand sanitizers can be used in a pinch to reduce the germs on your hands, but this won't completely eliminate them.

3. Don't cross-contaminate by cutting vegetables or other ready-to-eat foods on the same cutting board as chicken or meat. The knife and the cutting board should be thoroughly cleaned in between uses. If proper washing facilities are not available, it is best to bring two separate cutting boards - one for the meat, and the other for vegetables and other foods that won't be cooked. Never put cooked foods on the same plate that held the raw food.

4. Cook all food thoroughly. It's better to cook meat and poultry all the way through than to partially cook it and finish cooking it later. Use a food thermometer to make certain internal temperatures reach a minimum of the following:
-hamburgers (ground meats and sausages, including pork sausages): 155 degrees F
- steaks and other beef, veal, lamb, fish and shellfish: 140 degrees F
- poultry: 165 degrees F
- pork (except pork sausage): 150 degrees F

5. Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Grilled meat or chicken should be kept at 140 degrees F or warmer until serving. Cold foods should be kept in the insulated cooler and the cooler itself should be shaded if possible.

6. Mind the leftovers. All uneaten food should be refrigerated as soon as possible. Any food that has been unrefrigerated for more than four hours should be thrown away.

By following these food safety tips, you can enjoy your picnic today, without risking the misery of food poisoning tomorrow.


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