It Only Takes an Hour for Bacteria to Spoil Your Picnic Foods

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iStock

It turns out that Yogi Bear and ants are not the only things to fear when heading outdoors for a picnic lunch. During summer heat waves, you need to be concerned about food safety, too.

Typically, cooked food is safe to leave out at room temperature for up to two hours, Lifehacker reports. Beyond that, it should be kept out of the “danger zone” of 40°F to 140°F by being either refrigerated or kept hot using a heating source: This keeps bacteria from thriving. But food left outdoors on a warm day (above 90°F) chops that rule in half. Food only has about an hour under the Sun before bacteria like Salmonella and Staphylococcus aureus begin to multiply rapidly and greatly increase your chances of falling ill. If you’ve ever felt a little green following a long afternoon cookout, this is one possible reason why.

The one-hour rule applies to most foods starting at a cooked or cold-served temperature. Still, cold items like potato salad should be kept refrigerated or in a cooler until they’re ready to serve. Processed foods like bread, crackers, and other pantry-type products are generally safe to leave out.

You should also adhere to indoor food safety practices, like washing your hands before and after touching raw food items or before you sit down with a plate. If there’s no running water, bring a jug and some soap or wet wipes. While packing up for a day out, put your food coolers in the passenger section of your car, not the trunk, where temperatures can cause ice or gel packs to warm up.

Keeping your perishable picnic food organized and stored has another benefit. If it's stowed away until you’re ready to serve, it’s less likely to attract ants that think they’ve been invited to your little gathering. It’s also a good idea to check picnic grounds or table legs for fire ant mounds—a sure sign that you’re better off relocating.

[h/t Lifehacker]

Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

Sign Up Today: Get exclusive deals, product news, reviews, and more with the Mental Floss Smart Shopping newsletter!

Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

Sign Up Today: Get exclusive deals, product news, reviews, and more with the Mental Floss Smart Shopping newsletter!