According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 1 in 6 people in the United States (or 48 million people) get sick each year from eating contaminated food.
September is National Food Safety Month, and as such, Northwest Bergen Regional Health Commission, along with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CDC, offer these four simple steps to help keep your family safe from food poisoning:
Clean: Wash your hands before and after handling food and wash your cutting boards, countertops, dishes, and utensils with hot soapy water. Rinse fresh fruits and vegetables under running tap water.
Separate: Separate raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs from other foods in your grocery cart. Use separate cutting boards for fresh produce and raw meat, poultry, and seafood.
Cook: Use a food thermometer to ensure that raw meat, poultry, seafood, and egg products are cooked to a safe minimum internal temperature to destroy any harmful bacteria.
Chill: Refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry, eggs, seafood, and other perishables within 2 hours of cooking or purchasing. Refrigerate within 1 hour if the temperature outside is above 90° F. Never thaw food at room temperature, such as on the countertop.
Prioritizing food safety is critical in safeguarding both public health and the health of consumers. For more information on food safety, including resources used in this article, please visit:
- Safe Food Handling (English)
- Safe Food Handling (Espanol)
- Public Health Alerts and Recalls
Take care and be well,