December is a beautiful time of year. From decorating the tree and stringing up lights to making gingerbread houses and watching festive movies, it’s full of opportunities for quality time with your family and friends. As you prepare meals for your loved ones or bake Christmas treats, it’s important to keep food safety for the holidays in mind. Don’t let germs and bacteria ruin your precious time with your loved ones.
Food Safety for the Holidays
Keep Your Kitchen Clean
When you’re cooking for large groups of people, it’s especially important that you keep your kitchen clean. If you are hosting a group of people, that means more people are touching the surfaces in your kitchen. Take time each day to wipe down the handles on the cabinets, counter surfaces, microwave buttons, and fridge handle using a disinfectant spray or wipes. Realistically, it can be hard to keep up with the germs. Rely on help from a product like the SafeSpace Disinfectant Germ Fogger, which can quickly eliminate germs in your kitchen while reaching hard-to-reach spaces and areas you may have missed during your normal cleaning routine. Make sure to read the instructions on the can carefully, and remove all people and pets from the space and put away food before treatment.
Eliminate Germs in Your Car
Are you traveling by car for the holidays and bringing food along for the ride? In your car, use the SafeSpace Auto Germ & Odor Eliminator. Spray it into the vents and on frequently touched surfaces (like the steering wheel, door handles, and drink holders) to eliminate germs. This is especially beneficial if you’re using a rental car and you don’t know how recently it was thoroughly cleaned or if the previous renter was sick.
Make sure to frequently use hand sanitizer between pit stops so you can stay healthy enough to help prepare Christmas dinner. If you catch a bug and contaminate the food, you can quickly spread it to your entire family.
Teach Your Kids Hygiene in the Kitchen
When it comes to making cookies and delicious side dishes, your kids, grandkids, or nieces and nephews might want to join in on the grown-up fun. Of course, kids aren’t always the best at washing their hands after going to the bathroom, petting the dog, or playing outside. However, this doesn’t mean that you should deprive them of the fun memories that can be made while helping in the kitchen.
Before letting them dig in and help, roll up their sleeves, put their hair in a ponytail if necessary, and go over best handwashing practices. Make sure you regularly replace the hand towels, which can harbor germs and bacteria. Then, have the kids use an alcohol-free hand sanitizer (other types of hand sanitizer may cause dry hands, creating cracks that may let in bacteria).
Finally, since noses tend to run in the cold, explain to your children how to use tissues and sneeze into their elbows – rather than onto the food!
Other Food Safety Tips
Preparing dinner for your extended family can seem daunting, but by following the right protocol you shouldn’t have to worry about getting anyone sick. Follow these additional tips for food safety for the holidays:
- Sign up to receive automatic updates about the latest food recalls.
- Put your groceries away immediately after you purchase them. When you go grocery shopping, shop for nonperishable food first so your perishables aren’t sitting in your cart quite as long. Avoid running errands with groceries in your car, especially if you live in a warm climate.
- Throw away leftovers after three to four days (source). Examine and smell leftovers before consuming them, and if something looks or smells off, dispose of it.
- Be extra careful with raw meat. Use a meat thermometer to make sure you’ve cooked your meat to the appropriate temperature. Avoid cross-contaminating your food with bacteria from raw meat.
For help with food safety for the holidays, turn to SafeSpace. The SafeSpace Company is a family-owned small business proudly selling American-made germ foggers, auto germ and odor eliminators, and alcohol-free hand sanitizers to keep your family safe and healthy. To avoid germs this holiday season, stock up on disinfectant essentials with the SafeSpace Germ Fighter Kit. You’ll get everything you need to keep yourself and your family healthy: hand sanitizers, disinfecting and deodorizing mists, and disinfectant foggers. This handy kit makes a great Christmas gift as well!