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By Breanna Johnson

November 25, 2019

Naples, Fla.— According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), every year 1 in 6 Americans will get sick from eating contaminated food. When cooking during any part of the year including the holidays it is important to make food safety a priority.

The Florida Department of Health in Collier County (DOH-Collier) wants to remind residents and visitors to remain safe and healthy this holiday season by following these food safety tips:

Wash up - Before and after handling raw meat, poultry, eggs, and seafood make sure to wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. Make sure to not only wash your hands, but also wash all utensils, cutting boards, and countertops with hot soapy water after cooking.

Separate all food - Use one cutting board for raw meat, poultry, and seafood, and another one for vegetables and fruits. Even while shopping it is the best practice to keep raw meat, poultry, seafood, and other juices away from other foods.

Preparing and cooking food - The proper way to thaw food is in the refrigerator. Never thaw food by leaving it on the counter, this can lead to the food being at unsafe temperatures. Do not wash or rinse raw meat, poultry, or eggs it can spread germs. The best way to tell if food is cooked to the proper temperature is by using a food thermometer. If you do not have one, make sure to go out and buy one! Review the bullet points to learn the different internal temperatures food needs to be at:

  • All poultry, including ground poultry: 165˚F
  • Ground beef, pork, lamb, and veal: 160˚F
  • Beef, pork, lamb, and veal chops, roasts and steaks: 145˚F (let it rest 3 minutes before serving)
  • Fish: 145˚F

Put food away - Make sure to refrigerate perishable food within 2 hours. If the temperature is above 90 degrees Fahrenheit, chill food within 1 hour. It is best to divide leftovers into smaller portions and place the food in shallow containers to refrigerate or freeze them.

Baking safety - Do not taste or eat raw dough or batter. Follow these food safety tips to ensure you and your family stay safe and healthy!


About the Florida Department of Health

The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

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