National Food Safety Education Month: Learn the Basics of Food Safety

National Food Safety Education Month: Learn the Basics of Food Safety


SILVER SPRING, Maryland, Sept. 3, 2019 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Food safety helps keep food at its freshest, reduces food waste, and prevents food poisoning. September is National Food Safety Education Month and it’s a great time to learn (and practice!) the basics to keep your food safe.

For fun and educational resources on food safety from the farm to the processor to the retailer to your table, check out the Partnership for Food Safety Education’s Story of Your Dinner: You will find videos, delicious recipes, activities for kids, food prep tips, and helpful tips on each of the four steps for food safety below.

Step 1: Clean

  • Wash all produce thoroughly under running water 
  • Even if you do not plan to eat the skin, it is still important to wash produce first so dirt and bacteria are not transferred from the surface when peeling or cutting produce.

Step 2: Separate

  • Step 2 actually starts in your shopping cart! Keep produce separate from meat, poultry, seafood and eggs in shopping carts and bags.
  • When you get home, keep produce and other ready-to-eat foods in a separate area of the refrigerator from meat, poultry, seafood and eggs.

Step 3: Cook

  • Check the temperature! Make sure food is cooked to a safe internal temperature before you eat it. Not sure what the correct temperature is? Here’s a quick reminder:
    • Poultry should be cooked to 165° F.
    • Ground meat, meat mixtures, and egg dishes should be cooked to 160° F.
    • Beef, pork, ham, should be cooked to 145° F and allowed to rest for three minutes.
    • Fish and seafood should be cooked to 145° F.

Step 4: Chill

  • Refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry, eggs, seafood, and other perishables within 2 hours of purchasing or cooking (or 1 hour if kept in air temperatures above 90° F).
  • Never thaw food on your countertop! For defrosting, stick to using the fridge, immersing food in cold water or using cold running water, or thaw during cooking, such as thawing in the microwave and immediately cooking

For more information on food safety, visit FDA’s Education Resource Library to download or order materials and check out the newly redesigned, the main federal web site for food safety information. The redesign includes updated material for people most likely to become seriously ill from foodborne infections, such as pregnant women, young children, and people with immune systems weakened because of age or chronic illness. You will also find information on food safety by types of food, like meat, dairy, seafood, fruits, and vegetables.

Contact: Media: 1-301-796-4540; Consumers: 1-888-SAFEFOOD (toll free)

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SOURCE U.S. Food and Drug Administration

National Food Safety Education Month: Learn the Basics of Food Safety