Posted Monday, November 21, 2011 --- 9:35 a.m.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Thanksgiving is a time to enjoy and celebrate with families and friends, but experts say it's also a time to be especially careful of foodborne illnesses.
Elisabeth Hagen, the Department of Agriculture's Under Secretary for Food Safety, says more than 46 million turkeys will be eaten this holiday, so she's offering tips to help consumers protect themselves and their families while preparing and serving their Thanksgiving meals.
To start, Hagen advises that cooks use separate cutting boards for the raw poultry and anything else that's being served. She says a turkey should be cooked to 165 degrees and recommends not cooking the stuffing inside the bird.
Once the meal is over, Hagen says don't let leftovers sit out for more than 2 hours.
More than 1 in 6 Americans are expected to get a foodborne illness at some time this year.
Copyright 2011. The Associated Press.