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General Food Safety Tips

Everyone should practice general food safety precautions at all times:

  • Bacteria can grow in the danger zone between 4 °C and 60 °C (40 °F to 140 °F). Keep cold foods cold at or below 4 °C (40 °F) and keep hot foods hot at or above 60 °C (140 °F).
  • Place raw meat, poultry and seafood in containers on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. Use containers that are large enough to prevent raw juices from dripping onto other food or touching other food.
  • Keep raw food away from other food while shopping, storing, preparing and serving foods.
  • Wash fresh fruits and vegetables before eating them, clean counters and cutting boards and wash your hands regularly.
  • Read labels and follow cooking and storage instructions for all foods. Make sure to check the “best before” date, and if you find something on the shelf that has expired, let the store know.
  • Use warm soapy water to clean knives, cutting boards, utensils, your hands and any surfaces that have come in contact with food, especially meat and fish.
  • Refrigerate or freeze perishable food within two hours of cooking.
  • Freeze or consume leftovers within four days of cooking. Always reheat leftovers until steaming hot before eating.
  • Keep refrigerators clean and at a temperature below 4 C (40 F). Install a thermometer in your fridge to be sure.
  • Many harmful bacteria that could be in our food are destroyed when food is cooked to a certain internal temperature. Use a digital food thermometer to measure the internal temperature of your food so that you are sure that it is cooked properly. You can’t tell by looking.
  • Cook your food to a safe internal temperature.
Food Temperature
Beef, veal and lamb (pieces and whole cuts) —medium-rare 63°C (145°F)
Beef, veal and lamb (pieces and whole cuts) —medium 71°C (160°F)
Beef, veal and lamb (pieces and whole cuts) —well done 77°C (170°F)
Pork (pieces and whole cuts) 71°C (160°F)
Poultry (pieces)—chicken, turkey, duck 74°C (165°F)
Poultry (whole)— chicken, turkey, duck 85°C (185°F)
Ground meat and meat mixtures (burgers, sausages, meatballs, meatloaf, casseroles)—beef, veal, lamb and pork 71°C (160°F)
Ground meat and meat mixtures—poultry 74°C (165°F)
Egg dishes 74°C (165°F)
Others (hot dogs, stuffing and leftovers) 74°C (165°F)