Food-borne illness is very common. Every year, one of every 6 people get sick from “something they ate.” In warm weather, food brought from home and food out of refrigeration may reach temperatures in the danger zone for bacterial growth. Bacteria can multiply more easily when the temperature is more than 40 degrees F. and less than 140 degrees F. In a 2011 study, only 1.6% of the lunches with perishable items that children brought from home were at a safe temperature. Even when sent with ice packs, the temperature of most of the lunches was in the danger zone for over an hour before it was time to serve the food.
The ChooseMyPlate website has reliable nutrition advice from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. You can sign up for regular email information at www.ChooseMyPlate.gov. The December 10, 2014 ChooseMyPlate email was about whole grains. The suggestions are good for families and for early educators too.