Preparing Food and Avoiding Cross Contamination

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Food Preparation
Raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs can spread illness-causing bacteria to ready-to-eat foods if you don’t keep them separate.

Remember these helpful tips to avoid cross contamination:

  • Use one cutting board for fresh produce and a different one for raw meat, poultry or seafood.
  • Never place cooked food on a plate that previously held raw meat, poultry, seafood or eggs.
  • When storing in your refrigerator, place raw meat, poultry and seafood in sealed bags or containers to prevent their liquids from contaminatingotherfood and surfaces.
  • If you are not planning to use these foods within a few days, they should be kept frozen.

Visit fsis.usda.gov to learn more tips on why cross contamination matters.