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With Thanksgiving ahead, food officials stress safe handling of raw turkey

A food thermometer is the best way to tell if food is cooked properly. | STOCK.ADOBE.COM

MINNEAPOLIS — Food safety officials are stressing the importance of proper handling and cooking practices amid a nationwide outbreak of drug-resistant salmonella found in raw turkey, with Thanksgiving approaching.

The Centers for Disease Control last week said the number of reported illnesses has nearly doubled since July to 164. Minnesota has the most cases at 16. There’s been one reported death, in California, linked to tainted turkey.

The Star Tribune of Minneapolis reports that the USDA hasn’t named the suppliers associated with the tainted meat or identified a single, common source.

Officials say consumers should always wash their hands and all surface areas where turkey is prepared, never leave it to thaw on the counter, and use a meat thermometer to cook it to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

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