Health Tip: Prepare for a Picnic

(HealthDay News) -- A picnic is a great way to celebrate the warmer weather, but it's important to prevent food from spoiling and becoming a health hazard.

The foodsafety.gov website offers these tips for enjoying a picnic:

  • Prepare a list of essentials such as a cooler packed with ice, a food thermometer, containers for packing leftovers, paper towels and a supply of clean utensils. Make sure the picnic site has running water, trash cans, grills and picnic tables.

  • Thaw any frozen food in the refrigerator (never on the counter) or grill it frozen.

  • Store all perishables in a cooler packed with ice.

  • Wash hands before preparing food. Make sure any meat is thoroughly cooked. Check with a food thermometer.

  • Never leave food (even the cooler) in the sun. Store everything in a shady spot and refrigerate leftovers as soon as you return home.

  • Dish up grilled food on clean plates and with clean utensils.