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These CDC Features and related stories give consumers information they need to protect themselves and their families from illnesses that can come from germs in food, water, and other places. They also highlight CDC's role in detecting and responding to outbreaks, tracking trends in illnesses, and providing important health and safety information to the public.


Food Safety

Foods and Germs

Woman selling fruits and vegetables
Test Your Produce Safety Savvy

Do you have the know-how to make good produce safety choices? Take the quiz below to test your knowledge on selecting, storing, and preparing produce.

Woman selling fruits and vegetables
Global Networks Make Food Safer

Foodborne diseases are preventable, yet common causes of illness, disability, and death worldwide. Find out how CDC and global partners are equipping countries with tools and training to make food safer.

Photo: young girl cutting fruit on cutting board
Be Food Safe

Most people do not think about food safety until they or someone they know becomes infected with foodborne illness. People usually become infected with foodborne illness when they eat a contaminated food item.

Photo: Father and Son with glasses of milk
Raw (Unpasteurized) Milk

Raw milk can carry harmful germs that can make you very sick or kill you. If you"re thinking about drinking raw milk because you believe it has health benefits, consider other options.

Photo: E. Coli under microscope
E. coli Infection

Although most strains of E. coli are harmless, others can make you sick. Learn about E. coli and what you can do to help lower the risk of infection.

Photo: Complete Guide to Home Canning
Home Canning and Botulism

Home canning is an excellent way to preserve garden produce and share it with family and friends, but it can be risky or even deadly if not done correctly and safely.

Photo: Child making peanut butter sandwich
Salmonella is a Sneaky Germ: Seven Tips for Safer Eating

Salmonella can contaminate more than poultry and eggs. It sneaks its way into many foods— ground beef, pork, tomatoes, sprouts—even peanut butter. Learn what you can do to make your food safer to eat.

Hands holding four eggs
Tips to Reduce Your Risk of Salmonella from Eggs

Eggs are one of nature"s most nutritious and economical foods. However, they also carry a significant risk of carrying Salmonella if not handled or cooked correctly. Learn how to reduce the risks of a Salmonella infection from eggs.

Hand holding soap bar
Prevent the Spread of Norovirus

Noroviruses spread easily, causing more than 20 million gastroenteritis cases each year in the U.S. There"s no vaccine to prevent norovirus infection and no drug to treat it. Wash your hands often and follow simple tips to stay virus-free.

Mother and children holding cooked turkey
Tips to Prevent Illness from Clostridium Perfringens

Clostridium perfringens (C. perfringens) is one of the most common causes of food poisoning in the United States. Learn more on ways to prevent illness from this germ.

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Seasons, Holidays, and Events

Game Day Food Safety Tips

Before you tuck into wings, dips, salsa, and other finger food goodies, get to know the MVPs (most valuable practices) that will keep you and your Super Bowl fans cheering. Serving salsa on game day? Try the recipe below and remember to keep it chilled.

14 Tips for a Healthy Valentine’s Dinner

Whether you're dining out or staying in for Valentine's Day, follow these tips for a romantic and safe Valentine's dinner.

It's Turkey Time: Safely Prepare Your Holiday Meal

Whether you're a seasoned chef or a novice preparing your first holiday meal, be aware of safety issues when thawing, preparing, stuffing and cooking your turkey.

12 Ways to Have a Healthy Holiday Season

Pay special attention to your health and be safe this holiday season. Tips # 1 and 11 give helpful information on how to practice handwashing and food preparation during the holiday season.

Food Safety at Fairs and Festivals

A fun summer activity is attending fairs, festivals, carnivals, and rodeos. Follow these tips to have safe cooking, eating, and drinking experiences at those events.

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Pregnant Women and Infants

Pregnant Lady and teddy bear
Protect Your Unborn Baby or Newborn from Infections

If you"re pregnant or planning a pregnancy, there are simple steps you can take to protect your unborn baby or newborn from infections that cause serious health problems. Read more on how to protect you and your newborn from infection.

Pregnant lady in red shirt holding stomach
Food Safe and Pregnant: Tips for the Holidays and Beyond

Learn how to keep you and your unborn baby healthy this holiday season by being food safe.

Photo: Father bottle feeding son
Cronobacter Illness and Infant Formula

In infants, Cronobacter infection can cause a very rare, but serious illness. Learn what you can do to help lower the risk of infection from powdered infant formula.

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Data and Statistics

Trends in Foodborne Illness in the United States, 2013

The nation’s food safety grades are out and the results are mixed. CDC’s annual report shows that foodborne infections continue to be an important public health problem in the United States.

Chart:  Isolates Reported to PulseNet USA, 1996-2011
PulseNet and Foodborne Disease Outbreak Detection

PulseNet connects similar cases of foodborne illness together, quickly finding outbreaks, and linking these illnesses across states and countries. Read more about PulseNet"s research and latest findings.

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Healthy Water


Lady pouring hand sanitizer
Wash Your Hands

Keeping hands clean is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of infection and illness.


Healthy Swimming and Other Recreational Water Use

couple sitting on edge of swimming pool
Healthy Swimming Year-Round

Stay healthy and avoid recreational water illnesses (RWIs) when you swim or use the hot tub by following some simple steps.

Photo: Two Men Kayaking
Stay Safe While Boating

Wearing a life jacket can dramatically decrease your chances of drowning while boating. "Wear It!" every time you"re on the water.

Photo: Group of people rafting down river
Leptospirosis Risk in Outdoor Activities

People who enjoy outdoor activities such as freshwater kayaking, rafting, canoeing or swimming may be at risk for leptospirosis. Learn how to help prevent infection and stay safe outdoors.

Photo: Father watching son catch a football
Keep Kids Safe and Healthy This Summer

It's summertime! Be extra vigilant to prevent injury and keep your kids safe and healthy this summer.

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Water-Related Observances

Photo: China School Children washing hands
Global Handwashing Day

Global Handwashing Day is a way to support a global and local culture of handwashing with soap, shine a spotlight on the state of handwashing in each country, and raise awareness about the benefits of handwashing with soap.

Screen capture: Hand Hygiene
May 5: Hand Hygiene Day

Keeping hands clean is one of the most important ways to prevent the spread of infection and illness.

Water tower
Ground Water Awareness Week

Much of the water we use comes from the ground. Learn more about ground water, the threats to its safety and how to protect your own ground water sources during Ground Water Awareness Week.

pond water stream
World Water Day

Learn about the 2012 World Water Day theme, "Water and Food Security: The World is Thirsty Because We are Hungry," which focuses on the close link between water use and food production.

lady holding glass of water
Drinking Water Week

Water is the foundation for life. Learn more about the vital role safe water plays in our lives and what CDC is doing to address challenges to our water supply.

children swimming in lake
Healthy and Safe Swimming Week

Having fun while you swim this summer means knowing how to prevent recreational water illnesses (RWIs) and injuries. Learn how to stay healthy and safe while enjoying the water!

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Pets and Other Animals

Household Pets

child feeding dog
Healthy Pets Healthy People

There are many positive benefits of owning a pet; however, it"s important to know that some animals may carry germs that can be spread to people and cause illness.

image of lizard
Reptiles, Amphibians and Salmonella

Did you know that reptiles and amphibians like turtles, lizards, and frogs can carry a harmful germ called Salmonella? If there are young children in your home, reptiles and amphibians might not be safe pets for your family.

dog laying with toy
Salmonella from Dry Pet Foods and Treats

Dry pet food and treats often contain germs, such as Salmonella. It is important to know how to properly handle, store, and behave when handling dry pet foods and treats to minimize the risk of becoming ill. Follow these tips to help prevent an infection with Salmonella from handling dry pet food and treats.

school children playing with pet hamster
Animals in Schools and Daycares Settings

Animals can provide important opportunities for entertainment and learning. However, there is also a risk for getting sick or hurt from contact with animals, including those in school and daycare classrooms.

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Farms and Other Animals

Photo: Baby Chicken
Risk of Human Salmonella Infections from Live Baby Poultry

Live baby poultry, such as chicks, ducklings, goslings, and baby turkeys, can carry harmful germs called Salmonella. After you touch a chick, duckling, or other baby bird, or anything in the area where they live and roam, WASH YOUR HANDS so you don"t get sick!

chickens feeding
Keeping Live Poultry

Live poultry, such as chickens, ducks, geese, and turkeys, often carry harmful germs called Salmonella. Learn more about how to reduce your risk of contracting Salmonella-related illness.

Photo: A young girl being lifted up to pet an Arctic Fox
Stay Healthy at Animal Exhibits this Summer

There are many ways to explore the animal world. Follow these tips to help you prevent illness when visiting animal exhibits this summer.

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Diseases and Conditions

Valley Fever

Phoenix Dust Storm
Ten Things to Know about Valley Fever

Valley fever is a fungal respiratory disease that can be devastating. Learning about valley fever can help you and your doctor recognize the symptoms early.

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