Tip of the Day
Tailgates that Score the Extra Point
Sports fans are gearing up across the country to tackle tailgating. This season, make sure your tailgate scores the extra point by playing defense against food poisoning.
- Wash hands before, during and after preparing food.
- Pack moist towelettes to clean hands.
- Tightly seal raw meat in plastic wrap to prevent juices from contaminating other items. Consider packing meat products in one cooler and other foods in another.
- Pack extra or color-coded plates or utensils to prevent cross-contamination. Use one set for raw foods and another for cooked foods.
- Cook to proper temperatures. A food thermometer is the only reliable way to ensure foods are safe to eat. Tailgating favorites like hamburgers and bratwurst should be cooked to at least 160°F and chicken breasts to 165°F.
- Pack food in a well-insulated cooler with plenty of ice or icepacks and keep a refrigerator thermometer inside to ensure the temperature is below 40°F.
- Throw away perishable tailgate items before entering the game. Foods should not be left unrefrigerated for more than two hours. In hot weather (90°F or above) this time is reduced to one hour.
- After the game, serve and eat only non-perishable foods unless foods packed in the cooler remain stored at 40°F or below and are reheated to proper temperatures.
For information and tips on how to reduce your risk of food poisoning, visit HomeFoodSafety.org.
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