WCSJ Photo

(Photo Courtesy of The Illinois Fire Marshal's Office)

As the Holiday season begins, the Grundy County Health Department would like to share a few tips on safe food preparation.

Carrying food from one location to another and sharing dishes with a crowd means more opportunity for bacteria to grow and cause food poisoning. Whether you’re an experienced cook, a first-time party host, or simply adding a dish to the potluck lineup, the holidays can make even the most confident chefs nervous. Follow these steps to keep your holiday season food poisoning-free.

While Shopping:

  • Keep raw meat, poultry, and seafood away from other foods in your grocery cart.
  • Buy cold foods last.
  • Ask the cashier to place your raw meat, poultry and seafood in a separate bag.
  • Steps to follow during food preparation and cooking:
  • Use separate cutting boards for raw meat and ready-to-eat items like vegetables or bread.
  • Use separate cutting boards, plates and utensils for raw meats and cooked meats to avoid cross-contamination.
  • Prepare uncooked recipes before recipes requiring raw meat to reduce cross-contamination. Store them out of the way while preparing meat dishes to ensure they don’t become contaminated after preparation.
  • Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of dishes to ensure they are fully cooked and safe to eat. fish should be cooked to 145 ˚F; ground beef, veal and lamb should be cooked to 155 ˚F and all poultry should be cooked to 165 ˚F.
  • Discard perishable foods left out for 2 hours or more.

For more information visit .cdc.gov/foodsafety