Warm weather may be perfect for picnics and outdoor barbecues but Paramus Health Officer Judith Migliaccio wants to warn residents that special steps should be taken during the summer months to keep perishable food free from bacteria that can multiply rapidly and cause foodborne illness.
A few suggestions from the partnership for Food Safety Education are as follows:
• Always wash your hands with soap and warm water before handling any food.
• Marinate food in the refrigerator, not the countertop, and never use the leftover marinade from raw meat or poultry on cooked food.
• Never put cooked food from the grill back onto the same plate used to carry the raw food unless you’ve first washed it with warm, soapy water.
• When the outside temperature is above 90 degrees food should never sit out longer than one hour before being refrigerated.
• Fill all the empty spaces in a cooler with ice or cold packs in order to keep everything colder.
In addition, Board of Health President, Dr. Holly Driscoll would like to remind Paramus residents that diets rich in fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of cancer and other chronic diseases as well as provide necessary minerals and fiber. This time of year local produce is readily available. It’s low in calories, filling and easily worked into your daily eating habits. Ask your local grocery or market produce manager for healthy recipe suggestions.
For more food safety tips go to www.foodsafety.gov.