It is very important to store food properly to keep it safe, to protect it from harmful bacteria, chemicals and objects falling into food. You’ll need to store different types of food by storing in:
Chilling food properly helps to stop harmful bacteria from growing. Some foods need to be kept chilled to keep them safe, for example:
It is very important not to leave these types of food standing around at room temperature. Make sure that you:
When you are serving or displaying cold foods, they can be kept outside the fridge for up to four hours. If any food is left after this time, you should either:
Your fridge temperature
Cold food must be kept at 8˚C or below. This is a legal requirement
In practice, it is recommended to set your fridge at 5˚C to make sure that food is kept cold enough. Check regularly that your fridge and any display units are cold enough.
It is important to take care when freezing food and to handle frozen food safely:
Ideally, you should defrost food in the fridge. Putting food in the fridge will keep it at a safe temperature while it is defrosting.
If you cannot defrost food in the fridge, you could put it in a container and then place it under cold running water. Raw meat and poultry, including large joints and whole birds, should not be defrosted under cold running water unless they are in a sealed container.
You could also defrost food in the microwave on the ‘defrost’ setting.
Food should be thoroughly defrosted before cooking unless the manufacturer’s instructions tell you to cook from frozen.