Total time – 3:07
0:13 – Tips for keeping food safe
1:01 – Tips for cooking out safely
2:04 – Serving food outside
2:58 – Lead out
Lorre Kolb: Summertime food safety. We’re visiting today with Barb Ingham, Extension Food Safety Specialist, Department of Food Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison/Extension, in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, and I’m Lorre Kolb. Barb, what are some tips for keeping food safe for picnics.
Barb Ingham: Oh, there’s some great tips. The first would be to use an insulated cooler, either filled with ice or you can use those handy frozen gel packs, those will keep food at the right temperature before you get to the picnic. Foods that need to be kept cold include things like raw meat, poultry and seafood or those deli, luncheon meats that might be great for sandwiches and summer salads, tuna salad, chicken salad and egg salad. And interestingly, fruit and vegetables, especially those that are cut, also need to be kept cold; and of course dairy products. A full cooler actually will maintain it’s cold temperature longer and then avoid opening the cooler once you have it filled so that the foods stay cooler longer. And finally, if you’re going to be returning leftovers home, make sure that you stop for ice so those leftovers also stay cold.
Lorre Kolb: What should you think about when you’re cooking out?
Barb Ingham: We want to make sure that we use separate cutting boards and utensils or plates if we have raw meat and ready to eat items like vegetables or bread so we don’t spread germs from raw meat to other foods. We keep perishable food cold until it’s ready to cook, this includes foods that you’re marinating prior to grilling. And then after things are off the grill or if you’re thinking about whether they’re ready use a food thermometer to make sure meat and poultry are cooked thoroughly to their safe minimum internal temperature. And this will mean for beef, pork, lamb and veal those need to reach 145 degrees Fahrenheit and hold there for at least three minutes. For ground meats, like hamburgers, those need to reach 160 degrees. If you’ve got poultry on the grill, so chicken or poultry breasts or ground poultry that needs to reach 165 degrees. Always use a fresh, clean plate when you’re serving cooked foods, so don’t reuse that plate that touched the raw meat when you’re taking the food off the grill.
Lorre Kolb: What should you think about when you’re serving food outside?
Barb Ingham: Well, you actually have to think about how long it’s going to stay out. So perishable food – either raw food before it’s cooked or even food after it’s cooked should not sit out for more than two hours; that actually drops to one hour when the temperature outside is 90 degrees or higher. So have plenty of coolers available and plan your meal time so that you don’t have food sitting out on a picnic table for a long period of time. If you want to keep food cold, a good way to do it is to serve it in small portions and to keep the rest in the cooler. And after cooking meat and poultry, make sure you keep it hot until it’s served. You keep food hot either by keeping it on the grill, not directly over the coals, that’s a great way to keep food that’s supposed to be hot warm enough so that it will be safe until the family is ready to gather. Follow those steps, you’ll be ensured that you’ll have a safe and healthy picnic for your family.
Lorre Kolb: We’ve been visiting today with Barb Ingham, Extension Food Safety Specialist, Department of Food Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison/Extension, in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, and I’m Lorre Kolb.