Food-poisoning bugs can grow quickly in foods like cooked meats, fish, chicken and salads, particularly in warm weather. And because lunchboxes may sit around for several hours before the food is eaten, there’s plenty of opportunity for this to happen. Follow these suggestions to help keep food safe.
Hygiene. Make sure your hands, chopping board and utensils are clean and dry before preparing food.
Keep the food cold. Use an insulated lunchbox and/or put a freezer pack in with the food to keep it cool. Alternatively, include a frozen drink bottle in the lunchbox — it should defrost by lunchtime. Make sure the lunchbox is refrigerated when it gets to school, if facilities are available.
Preparation. Save time and keep food cool by freezing sandwiches the night before (or even prepare and freeze sandwiches for a week in advance). Foods suitable for freezing include bread, cooked meat, cheese, peanut butter, baked beans, mashed eggs and Vegemite. Yoghurt and fruit like grapes and banana segments can be frozen too.