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Keeping Your Food Safe

The concern of food safety is as close as your next meal. Illness-causing bacteria can survive in many places around your kitchen, including your hands, utensils, and cutting boards. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year, an estimated 48 million Americans get sick from eating contaminated or improperly prepared foods and many of these cases are from improperly home prepared and stored foods. Fortunately, most cases are easily prevented.

Handwashing is Critical

Studies have shown that handwashing is one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of many types of infection and illness—including foodborne illness.

  1. Wet your hands with clean running water (warm or cold) and apply soap.
  2. Rub your hands together to make a lather and scrub them well; be sure to scrub the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
  3. Continue rubbing your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the "Happy Birthday" song from beginning to end twice.
  4. Rinse your hands well under running water.
  5. Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry.

Learn more about preventing foodborne illness in your home.

Additional Resources