Tips for keeping cooler cool and food safe and fresh when picnicking

05/28/2012 12:36 EDT | Updated 07/28/2012 05:12 EDT
There are several tricks to ensure your cooler stays cool and the food in it remains safe and fresh:

— Never put a cooler in the trunk but transport it in the passenger area of a vehicle where it can benefit from air conditioning.

— When you get to the picnic site, remove the cooler from the car and set it in the shade.

— Pack drinks or non-perishable snacks in a separate cooler so you don't have to open the one containing the food.

— Refrigerate all planned picnic foods so they're cold before you pack them in a cooler.

— Never take home leftovers from a picnic. Discard any prepared food not eaten.

Source: Dave Pavletic, food safety manager, Middlesex London Health Unit.