Grocery Shopping Safety Tips

Your Life, Your Health e-Newsletter


Many of us go to the grocery store without stopping to consider the food-safety implications of common grocery shopping practices.


Making the effort to consider a few simple changes can significantly decrease the risk of contaminating foods or developing a foodborne illness.


Prior to Shopping

Grocery Bag 

  • Before heading to the market, remember to bring a cooler or insulated bag with an ice pack to keep cold foods at a safe temperature below 41°F
  • Bring your own plastic bags to separate meats, poultry, and seafood from other products while shopping to prevent cross-contamination


While Shopping


  • Start with non-perishable food items and work your way to the refrigerated sections to reduce the time that perishable foods are without refrigeration
  • Check "sell-by" and "expiration" dates on all perishable items
  • When purchasing meats, poultry, or seafood make sure that packaging is intact and keep separate from produce and other food products to avoid cross contamination. Ask to have these items bagged separately at check-out
  • Check eggs for cracks and cleanliness


After Shopping


  • Put away all perishable items first
  • When putting food items in the refrigerator make sure that all meat, poultry, and seafood products are placed on the bottom shelf to avoid dripping on other items
  • Put highly perishable items, such as meats and dairy products, as far toward the back of the refrigerator to achieve the coldest storage temperature possible