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Summer Food Safety

Summer Food Safety

How to buy, store and prepare this summer

Food safety is easy to keep top of mind when you’re grilling with proteins like chicken or fish but it’s equally as important when preparing foods that are generally eaten raw such as fruits and vegetables. 

When buying produce: 

·       Buy with the goal of getting what you can eat within the week. 

·       Select produce that looks fresh, free from mold, bruising or cuts.

·       Keep communication open with your produce managers at your local grocery store!  Ask them to learn more about products or request your favorites! They know a lot and are a great resource.

When storing produce: 

·       Remember that some produce like bananas, potatoes and onions keep best at room temperature!

·       If you’re peeling, prepping and cutting vegetables, refrigerate within two hours.

·       Toss any cooked veggie leftovers after three to four days

When preparing produce: 

·       Remember to wash all fruits and veggies with cool water before eating.  Dry them with a paper towel or clean kitchen cloth to eliminate bacteria. Some products, like packaged salads, are often pre-washed in chlorinated solutions and ready to eat without additional washing.

·       Rinse produce before removing outer peel to remove dirt and bacteria.  This helps to stop the transfer from the outside to the inside of the produce. 

·       Larger firm produce can be scrubbed with a produce brush – think cantaloupe or cucumbers. 

·       Remove damaged areas by cutting them away before preparing.  Remove outer leaves of lettuce too! 

·       Dedicate one cutting board for produce and another for raw meats.  For example, a green plastic board could always be used for fruits and veggies, while a red board cold be used for meat. 

Published June 1, 2022

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