RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCT) – When getting your shopping for the new school year completed, you may want to remember a couple of additional items.

The USDA protects the public’s health by making sure groceries items are safe and properly labeled.

Here are a couple of things you would want to remember like cleaning and sanitizing surfaces and utensils, buying different colored cutting boards so you can avoid cross-contamination in food prep, buying food thermometers for prep, insulated lunch boxes and gel packs to keep food cool, insulated containers to keep food separated and handwashing aides like hand sanitizers.

“Every day, parents focus on the health and safety of their children, and this focus includes how they prepare and pack lunches,” said Sandra Eskin, Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). “Because children are particularly at risk for serious foodborne illness, food safety must be at the top of the list when preparing lunches for school and field trips.”

Read more about USDA’s four steps to food safety and get your food-safe lunch questions answered by calling the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-888-674-6854.