Follow these tips:
- Be meat smart. Buy chicken, fish, and poultry at the end of your shopping trip so they stay cold longer. Make sure all meats are packaged tightly (double bagging is a good idea), so no juices (and the bacteria they contain) can leak out onto other foods.
- Bin there, what's that? It's sad but true: Many people skip the tongs and use their bare hands to get that bagel from the bread bin, introducing their own bacteria and viruses. That's not all they leave behind. Among the most commonly found items at the bottom of open bins are false fingernails. Skip any open containers, and opt for packaged items.
- Reuse, recycle, and rewash. Reusable bags are great for the environment, but they can be bad for food safety. Wash them after every 10 uses -- using an acidic cleaner such as vinegar, or running them through the washing machine -- to remove any dangerous bacteria from your previous shopping trips.