Whether you have kids going off to college, moving into an apartment, or if you have younger kids – you want to be sure they know about safe food storage temperatures. A review of safe storage for refrigerated or frozen foods can prevent serious illness. Bacteria multiplies in foods that are left at room temperature for many hours, especially meat and dairy products. Bacterial poising can usually be prevented if food is properly refrigerated or frozen and cooked to sufficient temperatures. Here is a simple checklist from best frozen food manufacturers melbourne to review with the family to prevent food illness from improperly stored foods.
Storing Refrigerated Food
There is a limit as to how long food can be kept in the fridge. Once the food begins to look or smell bad, it should be thrown out. Follow these tips to help keep refrigerated food safe:
- Always keep the temperature in the fridge at 4C or 40 F or less to deter bacterial growth.
- Store eggs in their carton on a shelf, not the door.
- Keep meat and poultry products in the original packaging. Packaging contains important information, like best before dates, whether it was previously frozen, and where the product is from (traceability).
- Keep your fridge clean to avoid cross-contamination from spilled or spoiled foods
- Don’t let meat or juices of raw meat and poultry drip causing contamination of other foods.
- Check labels to see if refrigeration after opening is required, once a vacuum seal is broken. Refrigerating food reduces growth of organisms which can cause food poisoning. Food is usually safe up to 2 weeks after opening, unless otherwise stated on the label.
- Do not store food in open metal cans in the refrigerator. Transfer food to glass or plastic reusable containers.
Storing Frozen Food
- Keeping food at -18C (0 F) stops bacterial growth, but it doesn’t kill bacteria already there.
- Food can be defrosted in the fridge, under cold running water or in the microwave.
- If you defrost food in the microwave, cook it immediately.
- Food that is freezer burnt – dry in some spots – is safe to eat but may not taste very good.
- Do not refreeze food that was frozen then thawed. If you cook the food when it is thawed, then you may refreeze it.
Fridge and Freezer Checklist
- After you shop, immediately put away food that needs to be refrigerated or frozen. You’ll know where they need to be by remembering which section of the grocery store you bought them in.
- Is the temperature of your fridge and freezer cold enough?
- Fridge should be 4 C (40F) or below.
- Freezer should be -18C (0F).
- Don’t put too much in either your fridge or freezer. Cool air must circulate freely to keep food properly chilled.
- Clean them both regularly
Durable Life Information on Food Products
Durable life is the amount of time that an unopened product will keep its wholesomeness, taste and nutritional value when stored under appropriate conditions. Manufacturers and retailer are responsible for determining the durable life of their food products. Durable life information is not a guarantee of the safety of the product. Old pancake mix, for instance, can develop dangerous mold spores and should be discarded.