March 21, 2018

Hotline Answers “Panic Button” Food Safety Questions

When you’re entertaining and preparing a big dinner, and have a question about food safety, where do you turn? The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has compiled a list of “panic button” food safety questions along with answers you can use.

The questions range from what to do if you cook the turkey with the giblet packet still inside, to whether or not it’s safe to cook a roast that’s been left out of refrigeration for hours. Did you know you should never prestuff a turkey? Or that there is a minimum safe oven temperature for roasting meats? Do you know how to keep a ham hot and safe for hours?

More Fact Sheets on safe food handling are available at the USDA site. And remember that the USDA’s Meat and Poultry Hotline, at 1-800-535-4555 ┬áis open for questions weekdays from 10:00nam to 4:00 pm ET. Recorded messages are available at all times. Ask Karen is an automated online service that has a database of commonly asked questions. You can also type in a question to find an answer after hours.

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