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updated: 7/3/2014 6:03 AM

Illinois health officials share picnic safety tips

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Associated Press

Illinois health officials have some food safety tips ahead of the Fourth of July holiday weekend for those planning to picnic. Department of Public Health Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck issued some reminders Wednesday.

Among the ideas:

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-- Temperature is the key to avoiding foodborne illness, so keep hot food hot and cold food cold.

-- Wash your hands and keep surfaces clean.

-- Make sure all meat and poultry are properly cooked.

-- Use a clean plate and utensils when taking food off the grill.

-- Refrigerate leftovers within two hours, and if there's any doubt, throw it out.

-- Symptoms of food poisoning can begin from 30 minutes to three or more days after eating tainted food. If symptoms are severe or last longer than two days, contact a doctor or health care provider.

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