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Food Safety Tips for Summer Grilling

Did you know foodborne illnesses increase during the summer? It’s the peak of grilling season in the U.S. You might be hitting backyard pool parties around Phoenix, or you might be visiting family out-of-state. Either way, outdoor meals require you to be even more mindful of food safety. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

Raw Temperature

At the market, pick out meat, chicken and seafood items last so that they stay cool for as long as possible. Refrigerate the items until you are ready to cook them. If you are marinating items, let them marinate in the refrigerator.

Avoid Cross-Contamination

When checking out at the store, place proteins in separate plastic bags. Wash your hands, utensils and all prep/cook surfaces before and after using them. Discard any sauces or marinades that have touched raw meat. Use different cutting boards for different types of food, such as meat, fruits/veggies, and poultry.

Cooked Temperature

Check this guide to proper cook temperatures for different types of protein. Don’t leave cooked food out too long. You should store leftovers in the refrigerator no more than an hour after cooking when it’s over 90 degrees out.

Dairy, Fruit and Veggies

Wash fruits and vegetables before prepping or serving. Dairy-based salads, fruits, and vegetables should be kept cool in a refrigerator or well-insulated cooler. When serving, do not keep the food out for more than an hour.  Consider serving perishable foods indoors if you are able to keep the room significantly cooler than the outside.


In addition to keeping drinks cool, bring a marker to mark cups and water bottles to help avoid “sharing” pathogens.

As always, don’t forget to hydrate and use sun protection! Check our guide to pool safety for backyard pool parties. Have fun!

Posted in Blog on July 25th, 2017