After skipping a year because of the coronavirus pandemic, Americans are expected to celebrate the 4th of July in full force this weekend. And many of them could end up sick if they don’t grill their burgers and steaks properly, according to one USDA official.
Sandra Eskin, the USDA’s Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety, says cases of salmonella and e. coli are rampant this time of year because people throw caution out the window when barbecuing meat. One of the most common causes, she says, is putting cooked meat on the same plate raw meat was carried out on, she says. Reusing a cutting board or utensils could transfer bacteria just as easily, Eskin adds.
“Don’t let foodborne illness ruin the cookout – follow food safety guidelines like washing your hands, thoroughly cooking your food and checking food temperature with a thermometer,” Eskin says.