There may be an enemy in food that you can't see, smell, taste, or feel. It can make you sick. The enemy is called BAC (bacteria).
You can keep your food safe from harmful bacteria. "Fight BAC!"® by following these four steps:
Wash your hands and food surfaces often.
Germs can spread around the kitchen. They get onto kitchen tools, and counters. You can "Fight BAC!"® when you:
- Wash hands with hot soapy water before you touch food.
- Wash your cutting boards, dishes, kitchen tools and counter tops with hot soapy water after you fix meat, chicken, and fish and before you use them again.
- Wash dish cloths often in hot water in the washing machine.
2. SEPARATE FOODS:
Germs can spread from one food to another. You can"Fight BAC!"® when you:
- Keep raw meat and fish apart from other foods in your shopping cart.
- Put raw meat, chicken, or fish below other foods in your refrigerator.
- Use a clean plate for cooked meat or fish.
Cook foods to safe temperatures.
Heat can kill germs that live in food. You can "Fight BAC!"® when you:
- Cook foods thoroughly.
- Use a food thermometer to check for doneness.
- Cook eggs until the yolk and white are firm.
- When you cook in a microwave oven, stir and rotate food. Heat the food all the way through.
|Raw Food||Temperature for doneness|
|Beef, pork, veal, lamb roasts and steaks:|
|Chicken, whole & pieces||165° F|
|Ground beef, veal, lamb, pork||160° F|
|Ground chicken, turkey||165° F|
|Ham and sausage, fresh||160° F|
|Stuffing, cooked separately||165° F|
|Whole turkey, unstuffed||165° F|
Refrigerate food promptly.
Cold temperatures slow the growth of harmful bacteria. Set your refrigerator at or below 40° F and the freezer at 0° F. You can "Fight BAC!"® when you:
- Split leftovers into small amounts and put them in the refrigerator to cool within two hours.
- Marinate foods in the refrigerator.
- Thaw food in the refrigerator (not at room temperature). You can also thaw food under cold running water or in the microwave. Cook thawed foods immediately.
Do You "Fight BAC?" ® Test Yourself!
Take the "Fight BAC"® Challenge!
Check your own safe food habits. Write your number next to each statement.
- The number of seconds it takes you to wash your hands: ______
- The temperature of your refrigerator: ______
- The temperature of your chicken when it is cooked: ______
- The temperature of your leftovers after being refrigerated for 2 hours: ______
Find the Food Safety Mistakes!
Adapted from Keeping Food Safe, University of Wisconsin Extension, 1993.
ARE YOU A BAC FIGHTER?
|Circle the answer that best describes how often you:|
|1.||Wash hands with soap and water after handling raw meat or poultry.||Never||Sometimes||Always|
|2.||Wash cutting boards, dishes, utensils and counter tops between uses.||Never||Sometimes||Always|
|3.||Use a separate, clean plate for meat, poultry and fish after it has been cooked.||Never||Sometimes||Always|
|4.||Thaw foods in the refrigerator.||Never||Sometimes||Always|
|5.||Use a thermometer to check
cooked food for doneness.
|6.||Refrigerate or freeze
leftovers in 2 hours.
|7.||Divide foods into
small amounts to cool.
|8.||Use separate spoons for
tasting and cooking.
If you circled "Always" 7 or more times you are a Fantastic BAC Fighter! Congratulations! If you circled "Always" 5 or 6 times, you can still be a better BAC Fighter. If you circled "Always" 4 or fewer times, you may be letting BAC win the fight!
How Well Did You Do on the "Fight BAC"® Challenge?
Compare your measurements to the food safety tips below.
- Clean - your hands for 20 seconds.
- Chill - foods in your refrigerator at 40°F.
- Cook - chicken and other poultry to 165°F.
- Chill - leftovers to be at least 70°F after 2 hours, (40°F within 4 hours.)
Answers to: Find the Food Safety Mistakes!
- The woman did not use separate spoons for tasting and cooking food.
- The woman did not keep her hair back while cooking food.
- The can of soup is dented and may be unsafe.
- Food packages are open and can attract insects and rodents.
- The boy is sneezing and contaminating the chicken.
- The chicken is dripping juices and contaminating things in the drawer.
- The chicken is not kept chilled in the refrigerator.
- The milk is not kept chilled in the refrigerator.
- The baby did not have his/her hands washed after touching the pet and before eating a snack.
- The cup of spilled milk will need to be washed before the baby drinks from it.
- The cereal box under the sink is not stored in a dry place.
- The trash is not covered and has not been emptied before it attracted flies.