It's Time for Easter Eggs!
While it's important to keep food safety in mind year-round, holidays can involve extended family and friends gathered around the table, which makes food safety even MORE important! You may not be thinking about that as you're decorating or hiding your eggs, but we encourage you to keep these tips from incredibleegg.org and the American Egg Board in mind.
- Wash your hands between all the steps of cooking, cooling, dyeing, and decorating.
- Keep the eggs refrigerated as much as possible. Put them back into the refrigerator whenever you're not working with them.
- Be sure that all the decorating materials you use are food safe.
- If you hide the decorated eggs, put them where they won't come into contact with pets, other animals, birds, or lawn chemicals.
- After you've found all the hidden eggs, throw out any that are cracked or have been out at room temperature for more than two hours.
It is estimated that each year, roughly 1 in 6 Americans (or 48 million people) get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die of foodborne diseases. Taking the time to keep your food safe is well worth it! It is very important to keep food safety on the top of your list when you are cooking or preserving.
CLEAN: Washing your hands and cleaning surfaces often will reduce the risk of bacteria spreading. Washing your hands and cleaning surfaces are especially important after handling raw meat.
SEPARATE: Cross contamination is described when pathogens are transferred from one surface to another. This occurs when ready to eat food such as fresh fruits and vegetables are cut on the same unwashed cutting board as raw meat.
COOK: Making sure that food is cooked to the correct internal temperature is incredibly important! Temping your food, especially meat, is critical to reduce foodborne illness.
CHILL: Keep foods out of "The Temperature Danger Zone" (40 - 140 degrees Farenheit). Harmful bacteria grow rapidly between these temperatures. Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours to reduce bacteria growth. Make sure your refrigerator is set to 40 degrees or below.