In anticipation of the beginning of football and tailgating season, I have put together some of the most frequently asked questions that USDA's Meat and Poultry Hotline receives about hamburgers and food safety. Whether you’re grilling burgers at home or outside the stadium, here’s what you need to know:
Do you have guidelines for buying ground beef or hamburgers? What's the best way to handle them?
- Choose a package that is not torn and feels cold. If possible, put it in a plastic bag so leaking juices won't drip on other foods.
- Make ground beef one of the last items to go into your shopping cart. Be sure to separate raw meat from ready-cooked items in your cart.
- Have the cashier bag raw meat separately from other items and plan to drive directly home. You may want to take a cooler with ice for perishables.