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COUNTY OF MONTEREY

HEALTH DEPARTMENT

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November 2017 Nov 2017
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News

  • Family and Food Safety First this Thanksgiving

    Eating healthy this Thanksgiving begins with basic home food safety practices that are known to reduce the risk of foodborne illnesses. The Monterey County Health Department is reminding all cooks entering the kitchen this season to follow the Fight BAC!® basics of home food safety: Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill.

    11/16/2017 5:35:00 PM

  • Sixth Annual Adelante Con Orgullo Mujer Inmigrante (ACOMI) Conference

    The sixth annual Adelante Con Orgullo Mujer Inmigrante (ACOMI) women’s health conference is being held Saturday, December 2nd from 9 am to 4 pm at Hartnell College. This free conference is specifically for Spanish-speaking immigrant women.

    11/16/2017 3:46:59 PM

  • Safe Travels Via Salinas Grant to benefit 65+ population and Elementary Schools in Salinas

    The Monterey County Health Department announced today that it has been awarded $130,000 as part of a Safe Travels Via Salinas grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety. This grant will bring pedestrian safety education to the 65+ population and bike education to schools in Salinas. The yearlong grant start date was on November 13, 2017 and will benefit three elementary schools in East Salinas – Bardin Elementary, Cesar E. Chavez, and Dr. Oscar F. Loya Elementary.

    11/15/2017 3:54:00 PM

More

Care of reusable bags

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supermarket-cart-vector-illustration_fkK9-wdAs more jurisdictions adopt reusable bag ordinances, we all will be swapping disposable grocery bags for cloth and plastic-lined reusable bags. How should we care for our bags?

The fabric or materials in reusable grocery bags can get contaminated with germs like Salmonella or E. coli from food or other items. These germs could then cross-contaminate other food or items we carry in the reusable bag and make us sick.

If you use reusable grocery bags, here are some simple steps that you can follow to reduce cross-contamination and keep yourself and your family safe from germs.

Wash reusable grocery bags often.

  • Cloth reusable bags should be washed in a washing machine using laundry detergent and dried in the dryer or air-dried.
  • Plastic-lined reusable bags should be scrubbed using hot water and soap and air-dried.
  • Check that both cloth and plastic-lined reusable bags are completely dry before storing them.

Always put raw meats into a disposable plastic bag before putting them in a reusable bag.

  • A disposable plastic bag helps contain any juices that drip off of raw meat packages, which can touch other foods and contaminate them. Disposable plastic bags are usually available in the raw meat or produce areas of your store.
  • Throw away disposable plastic bags used for raw meat immediately after use. Never reuse bags that contained raw meat or poultry.

Keep meats, fresh produce, and ready-to-eat foods separated.

  • Use separate bags dedicated for meats, fresh fruits and vegetables, and ready-to-eat foods. It’s also a good idea to keep these foods separated in your shopping cart, at the checkout line on the conveyor belt, and at home. This will help reduce cross-contamination.
  • Remember that cold food needs to be refrigerated within two hours of leaving the store or market. Cold food should be refrigerated within one hour when temperatures outside are above 90 degrees.

Store reusable bags at home in a cool, dry place, not in the car.

  • Store reusable bags in a cool, dry place, such as in your home or in the garage. Higher temperatures, like those inside of a car or a car’s trunk, can cause germs like Salmonella bacteria to grow faster.

Do not use reusable grocery bags for other purposes.

  • Bags used for groceries should be used only for food. Don’t carry items such as baby bottles, toys, gym clothes, and other items in the same reusable bags that you take to the grocery store.

These simple steps will help you to reduce cross-contamination, and help keep you and your family safe from harmful bacteria.

Questions?


 

Laura Gieraltowski, PhD, MPH, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)