Food Safety

Smart Safety Tips

Packing Safe lunches

As caregivers you want to send your preschooler off with a safe, healthy lunch. 

  •  Keep cold lunches cold:  Be aware that a packed lunch may not stay cold between the time you make it and the time your child eats it. Include a frozen juice box or small gel ice pack to keep it cold. 
  • Insulated, soft-sided lunch boxes or bags are best for keeping food cold, but metal or plastic lunch boxes and paper bags can also be used. If using paper lunch bags, create layers by double bagging to help insulate the food.
  • Keep hot lunches hot: Use insulated containers to keep foods like soup warm until lunch time.  
  • More ideas on how to keep bag lunches safe. 

Safe Snacking

Many hands reaching into a bag of snacks can result in the spread and accumulation of germs.  You can prevent this by dividing up large bags or purchase individual packets.  This also helps preschoolers learn about amounts to eat.

Raw eggs turn up in unexpected places such as: cookie dough, cake batter, homemade ice-cream and homemade egg-nog.  Raw eggs may be contaminated with Salmonella.  Salmonella can make your child sick.  If the eggs are in a recipe that will be cooked to reach 160 °F, and will not be tasted raw, a shell egg is perfectly safe to use.  To learn more about eggs and food safety, click here.

Easter eggs are a fun tradition for many families but they can be a health hazard if not handled properly.

  • Dyeing eggs:  After hard cooking eggs, dye them in food-safe coloring and return them to the refrigerator within 2 hours. 
  • Blowing out eggshells:  Only use un-cracked, refrigerated eggs.  Wash the egg in hot water and then rinse in a solution of 1 tablespoon of unscented, liquid chlorine bleach in 1 gallon of water.  This will destroy bacteria that may be present on the surface of the shell.
  • Hunting for eggs:  If you are preparing an Easter egg hunt with hard-boiled eggs, use extra caution when hiding the eggs to prevent the shell from cracking.  If the shell cracks, bacteria and germs can contaminate the egg. Eggs should not be out of the refrigerator for more than 2 hours.  Once eggs have been found (within the 2 hour time), re-refrigerate immediately and consume within 7 days.  Do not eat if shell is cracked or if eggs were unrefrigerated for more than 2 hours (or 1 hour if over 90 degrees F).