Rule to follow while storing leftovers.

February 26, 2023

A lot of time when we eat, we left with leftovers. To ensure that leftovers are safe to eat, ensure that the food is cooked to a safe temperature and that the leftovers are refrigerated.  The common causes of foodborne illness are not cooking food to a safe temperature and leaving food out at an unsafe temperature. The safe handling of leftovers is critical for reducing foodborne illness. 

The temperature range of 4°C to 60°C is harmful because it allows harmful bacteria to grow, making food unsafe to eat. Perishable foods can spend a maximum of two hours in the danger zone. After two hours, the food must be consumed, properly stored, or discarded. All cooked leftovers, chopped fruits and vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products are included.

If the total time is less than 2 hours, the food can be consumed or refrigerated for later use.  If the total time is 2 to 4 hours, the food can still be used but cannot be refrigerated. If the total time is 4 hours or longer, the food must be discarded.

Don’t put hot food immediately in the fridge. Let it cool down for some time and then transfer it to the fridge. When you put hot food inside the fridge it also raises the temperature of other food products in the fridge which eventually leads to spoilage.

Liquid-based products can be quickly cooled by adding ice cubes to the dish before storing them. Leftover food must be stored below 5°C and reheated at 60°C Temperatures in the middle are in the danger zone, where bacteria thrive.

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