Basic tips to keep food healthy, safe during summer activities

Picnics and barbecues go hand-in-hand with summer, but so do food-borne illness.   

According to, approximately one in six Americans is stricken with food poisoning each year.  

With backyard get-togethers resuming, Southern Seven Health Department recommends that everyone follow a few basic tips to keep their food healthy and safe.  

Keep it clean: Wash surfaces, utensils and hands with soap and water, and bring sanitizing wipes too.  Wash all produce under plain running water before eating, cutting or cooking even if you plan to peel them.  

Use separate plates and utensils for raw and cooked meat and poultry, and ready-to-eat foods like raw vegetables.  

Use a food thermometer. Just because it looks cooked doesn’t mean it’s safe to eat.

Chill raw and prepared foods promptly. Refrigerate foods within two hours, or one hour if the temperature is above 90 degrees. Keep everything in a cooler on ice until it is ready to eat.

For foods containing egg, milk or cheese, while on the table nestle them in ice to keep them cool.

For more information on what to do to keep food safe during the summer, call Southern Seven Health Department at 618-634-2297, extension 9114, or visit 

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158

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