Tackling food safety is important when preparing food for any occasion, especially during outside events like picnics.
Having a plan is key to protecting yourself from foodborne illness. Having a cooler, clean utensils, fresh water, soap and a food thermometer will help keep food safe.
Make sure to take into account the temperature of the insulated cooler and placement of raw meats when packing the cooler. Careful placement will keep food safe from cross contamination and nasty bacteria.
According to the American Cancer Society, holding the food temperature is vital when transferring perishable foods from one place to another. When bringing foods that need to be kept cold, they should be kept in a cooler that is below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. These foods include raw meat, poultry, and seafood; deli and luncheon meats or sandwiches; summer salads (tuna, chicken, egg, pasta or seafood); cut-up fruits and vegetables, and perishable dairy products.
When cooking meats, use your food thermometer to measure the meats internal temperature. Cooking meats thoroughly with the use of a food thermometer will protect you from dangerous bacteria and help reduce the risk of overcooking.
According to U.S. Department of Agriculture, keeping food at unsafe temperatures are prime causes of foodborne illness. Always refrigerate perishable foods within two hours to defend against foodborne illnesses. If it has been out for more than two hours, or more than one hour in temperatures over 90 degrees Fahrenheit, throw it out!