Food safety tips for fall outings

Headed to a farm to select the perfect pumpkins or apples? Planning to attend a fall festival or fair and try the foods and beverages available? Remember that food safety practices should be the same at farm stands and festivals as they are in restaurants and at home.

There are always fun things to see and experience at festivals including artwork, music, games and rides. One of the biggest draws to these events is the many different types of foods and drinks available.

Remember that food safety practices are the same at festivals as they are at restaurants and at home: clean – wash your hands; separate – don’t cross contaminate; cook to the right temperature; and chill – refrigerate promptly.

What should you consider before buying food from a vendor? Does the vendor have a clean/tidy workstation? Does the vendor have a sink for employees to wash their hands? Do the employees wear gloves or use tongs when handling food? Does the vendor have refrigeration on site for raw ingredients or pre-cooked foods?

Certain foods, including meat, poultry and fish need to be cooked to a temperature high enough to kill harmful germs that may be present.

What other steps can you take to protect you and your family? Wash hands often. Find out where hand washing stations are located. Wash your hands with soap and clean running water for at least 20 seconds. Always wash hands after using the restroom, after playing a game or going on a ride, before eating and drinking, after changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet, and after removing soiled clothes or shoes. Bring hand sanitizers or disposable wipes in case there aren’t any places to wash your hands.

Nancy Nelson38 Posts

Nancy Nelson is the Meadowlark Extension District agent in the areas of family and child development.

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