Enjoying holiday dinners and buffets safely

Tips to keep food safe so that your family and friends can enjoy time together without the worry of foodborne illness.

Enjoying holiday dinners and buffets safely

The next few weeks will likely be filled with holiday dinners, buffets, snacks and brunches of all kinds. As we celebrate the Christmas holiday, ring in 2016 with New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, as well as the football fans packed series of bowl games, food will be the forefront of many of these celebrations. Michigan State University Extension always recommends proper holding of food when enjoying celebrations with family and friends in order to stop harmful bacteria from causing foodborne illness. Follow these easy tips to keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold so your great tasting food is safe for all of your upcoming celebrations:

  • Store cold perishable foods like meat, eggs, leftovers and cut fruit in refrigeration, below 40 degrees Fahrenheit (F) or store them on ice.
  • Store hot perishable foods above 140 degrees F in hot holding equipment (roasters, crock pots, chafing dishes).
  • Use a thermometer in your refrigerator to make sure the temperature is below 40 degrees F. Refrigerators should be held at 38-40 degrees F and must be monitored by a refrigerator thermometer to ensure a safe temperature.
  • Use food thermometers when holding hot foods to make sure they stay above 140 degrees F temperature.
  • Foods that have been sitting in the danger zone temperatures for two hours or longer should be discarded.

Keep food safe so that you and your family and friends can enjoy time together without the worry of foodborne illness.

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