Celebrate with Fireworks and Food Safety this Fourth of July
Oh say can you see!
Summer's biggest holiday is here to bring out the American patriot in all of us. BBQs and fireworks are bound to light up the day to honor of America's statehood, and we couldn't be more pumped!
But before we start celebrating the stars and stripes, we must help avoid the spread of foodborne illnesses and keep these important food safety measures in mind:
Clean the surfaces and utensils.
It is important to take the time to clean your grill before you use it to prevent foodborne illnesses. To properly clean it, first, remove your grates and place them in a bucket full of hot water and dish soap. While the grates soak, scrub the inside of the grill with a grill brush. Then wipe the walls with a damp paper towel. Then scrub and rinse the grates. Put the grates back, replace the drip pan, and you should be good to grill. Also, be sure to wash your hands before handling any food!
Separate utensils and plates for raw and cooked meat.
You don’t want your raw meat to contaminate your cooked meat. Try keeping your cooked meat on a different plate than your raw meat.
Cook foods to the right temperature.
Try not to trust the readiness of cooked meat just by looking at it. Do some research and figure out what the proper internal temperatures that certain foods should be. Use a food thermometer to test the internal temperatures of your food. Burgers should have an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit when ready.
Chill foods that aren’t being consumed.
Don’t leave cooked or raw food at room temperature for more than 2 hours. That time can vary greatly depending on the weather conditions during your BBQ.
Clean the produce and serve over ice.
When it comes to fresh fruits and vegetables it is important to thoroughly wash the skins before the BBQ. To properly wash the produce, all you have to do it rinse it under water. For firmer-skinned produce, use a vegetable brush and scrub the dirt and contaminants off. To keep the produce fresh while serving, try and place the serving bowls and platters over ice.
At the time of the signing of the Declaration of Independence the men and women of the thirteen colonies struggled with the burdens of an overreaching father nation.
Today, we may not have to worry about the British Empire, but we do have to be mindful of dangers such as food poisoning. Food poisoning is a hazard that can affect hundreds of thousands of people each year. In addition, food-related sicknesses are far more common during the summer months while we indulge in BBQ’s and picnics.
Help spread food safety awareness at home and follow these tips to ensure a happy and healthy 4th of July. 🇺🇸
Happy Independence Day!