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Wed May 29, 2013

June 21 is the first day of summer and the DuPage County Health Department wants your family and guests to remain safe and healthy during picnics and barbecues this summer.
"Pack" the following recommendations into your picnic basket:

  • Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after handling food. If you have no clean water, bring water, soap, and paper towels or have disposable wipes/hand sanitizer available.
  • Keep raw meat, poultry and seafood in a separate cooler or securely wrapped at the bottom of a cooler so their juices won't contaminate already prepared foods or raw produce. Have a clean platter and utensils ready at grill-side for serving.
  • Use a food thermometer to make sure food is cooked thoroughly to destroy harmful bacteria. Partial precooking in the microwave or on the stove is a good way to reduce grilling time.
  • Keep hot food at 140°F until served. Keep cooked meats hot by setting them to the side of the grill, or wrap well and place in an insulated container.
  • Keep cold food at 41°F or below until served. Keep cold perishable food in a cooler until serving time. Keep coolers out of direct sun.
  • Don't let hot or cold perishables sit out for longer than two hours, or one hour if the temperature is above 90°F.
  • Transport food in the passenger compartment of the car where it's cooler-not in the trunk.

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