RICHARDSON – September is Food Safety Education Month and there are a few things people can do to help protect themselves and others from getting sick.

Here are four simple steps to prevent food poisoning: Clean, Separate, Cook and Chill.

Over the next two weeks, we’ll highlight each step.

In this article we’ll focus on Clean. Remember to wash your hands and surfaces often. Germs that cause food poisoning can survive in many places and spread around your kitchen. The CDC recommends washing your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm or cold water before, during, and after preparing food and before eating. Wash your utensils, cutting boards, and countertops with hot, soapy water after preparing each food item. Also, rinse fresh fruits and vegetables under running water.

Visit the CDC for more information on Food Safety Education Month.