Picnics: Food Safety 101
No one wants their picnic guests to get sick from the food brought along on a trip. Follow some important food safety guidlines when considering packing a certain food.
- Make sure to keep foods that are meant to be hot, hot and cold foods cold. It is important to know that when foods are between 50 to 125 degrees F product posions and bacteria can grow on your foods.
- Make sure to refrigerate foods like chicken, eggs, or meat salad as soon as possible. Preparing them as close to picnic time as possible is very important as the foods should stay cold up until the time you serve them. Make sure to also include an ice pack in your picnic backpack to keep the foods cool on a longer hike.
- Using cold meats in salads, such as chicken salad, is important as it will help keep the entire cool up until the time to eat it
- Use Thermos bottles to keep stews and drinks at the correct tempature for many hours. Using sterilized containers, and filling them while the food is still boiling hot will cut down on any food safety issues.
- Using dry ice, gel cold packs, or ice cubes can help keep foods cold. Storing foods in airtight containers or aluminum foil will also keep foods fresh. Use the smallest containers possible as this will help to keep foods fresh.
- When packing your picnic, put the foods that will be eaten first on the very top and the ones that wil be eaten last at the bottom with the ice pack, this will help keep food cold for as long as possible. Also make sure to reseal the cooler when pulling food out.
- Placing your picnic basket or cooler in a shady spot can also keep ice packs cold for hours.
- It is always important to not eat food that you may questioning. It is better to be safe than sorry!
- Using insluated picnic baskets, backpacks, or other accessories designed for picnics can help keep your food fresh and delicious all picnic long!