As Labor Day approaches and everyone makes plans for that last big barbecue holiday, don't forget to plan your food for safety. Use these simple guidelines for safely grilling your food.
When shopping for meat and poultry, put them in the shopping cart last, just before checkout. Guard against cross-contamination, which happens when raw meat or poultry juices drip on other foods, by putting packages of raw meat and poultry into plastic bags. Be sure to take your grocery purchases straight home. If home is more than a 30-minute drive, take a cooler with ice to transport the food safely. When you arrive at home, place meat and poultry in the refrigerator immediately.
Some recipes call for meat and poultry to be marinated for several hours. Always marinate food in the refrigerator, not on the counter. Don't reuse marinade unless it's boiled first to destroy bacteria.
When traveling to a picnic site, keep cold foods cold. Use an insulated cooler with plenty of ice. Be sure to pack food straight from the refrigerator into the cooler just before leaving.