It’s that time of year...festivals, county fairs, and barbecues all have one thing in common, food. Folks line up at vendor’s windows for good eats, but you have to make sure that the food is safe. Here are some things to look for when you are out looking for some great grub:

Hygiene. Making sure that the food service workers are washing their hands, and wearing gloves when they need to.  You definitely don’t want that cross contamination from raw to cooked meat.

Equally as important as hand washing though, is the temperature of the food.  Hot food needs to be kept above 165 degrees, while cold food should be less than 41 degrees. If it sits between those temperatures, it can become contaminated quickly.

“If the food is sitting at the middle temperature for too long, it gets exposed to bacteria and microorganisms that are never good for your stomach. The last place you want to spend most of your day after, is on the porcelain throne.

Here is some advice if you ever question a vendor..

You need to make sure that when you buy something, that it is hot. If the food is warm or it’s cold, and if it feels like it’s not quite the right temperature , then take it back and ask for another product.

Most vendors are pretty good and they know the rules, but there could be a few rogues out there.

According to the center for disease control, around 3000 people die from food borne illnesses each year.