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Originally Published by The Sentinel-Record

The holidays are here, and it is time to think about turkey and all the fix-in’s. For most Arkansans, Thanksgiving is a time for family, food, and football. We will gather with our family and eat way too much and enjoy spending time together. Taking a few precautions can prevent our family time from becoming sick time.

The top four food safety tips can be easily remembered with these four words: clean, separate, cook and chill. While these four words should be applied all year long to keep our food safe, they are even more important for our holiday get-togethers.

Clean — Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm or cold water before, during and after preparing food and before eating. This is especially important after handling uncooked meat, chicken and other poultry, seafood, flour, and eggs. Countertops, cutting boards, and utensils should be washed with hot soapy water after preparing each food. Rinse your fresh fruits and vegetables under cold running water.

Separate — Prevent cross-contamination by keeping raw meat, seafood, eggs, and poultry separate from ready-to-eat food. Store raw or marinating meats in the refrigerator in sealed containers away from other foods. Avoid spreading germs by using different cutting boards.

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infection prevention