July 1, 2004
Prairie Fare: Perfect Picnics Begin with Food Safety
Having dinner in a park or campsite can become a fond memory. Getting food borne illness from a picnic can also be a memorable experience, but not a fond one.
Each year over 76 million people in the United States get sick after eating contaminated or undercooked food. The number of food borne illness outbreaks tends to increase during the summer months as people move cooking and eating outdoors. Warm, humid weather promotes the growth of bacteria, too.
Fortunately, there are many things we can do to help prevent picnics from becoming “panics.” Test your summertime food safety savvy with this quiz.
1. True or False? Using a block of ice in the bottom of a cooler is more effective at keeping food cool than using ice cubes.
2. On a hot summer day, what’s the longest amount of time that perishable food should be safely left outside of a cooler?
3. Using a food thermometer, what are the recommended safe internal cooking temperatures for each of the following foods?
4. Which of the following foods have been associated with food borne illness outbreaks?
5. What is the recommended amount of time for washing hands?
6. True or False?
Ice has been linked with food borne illness, because
7. Cold food, like salads, should be kept below:
8. Where’s the best place to transport a cooler filled with perishable food?
How did you do? The answers are: 1. True; 2. a; 3. Chicken breasts: 170 degrees; Steak: 145 degrees; Hamburgers: 160 degrees; 4. e; 5. a; 6. True; 7. b; 8. b.
Here’s an easy, refreshing summertime recipe to enjoy as a picnic side dish.