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Food Safety In A Power Outage


Food Safety In A Power Outage

Power outages can present challenges when it comes to food safety. Here are some essential tips to ensure your food stays safe during a power outage:

Power outages can present challenges when it comes to food safety. Here are some essential tips to ensure your food stays safe during a power outage:

  1. Keep the Fridge and Freezer Closed: Limit opening your refrigerator and freezer doors as much as possible. This helps to maintain the cold temperature inside and preserve the food for a longer time.
  2. Use Thermometers: Keep an appliance thermometer in your fridge and freezer. When the power goes out, check the temperatures. The refrigerator temperature should be 40°F (4°C) or below, and the freezer should be at 0°F (-18°C) or lower.
  3. Prepare in Advance: Freeze containers of water, gel packs, or ice packs ahead of time. Placing these in the fridge and freezer can help maintain lower temperatures during a power outage.
  4. Keep Food Together: If you know a power outage is imminent, group refrigerated and frozen foods together. This helps them stay colder longer.
  5. Consider Ice or Dry Ice: If available, consider getting ice or dry ice to keep the fridge and freezer cold. Dry ice can be especially effective for longer outages.
  6. Monitor Time: Keep track of how long the power has been out. A refrigerator will typically keep food cold for about 4 hours if it’s unopened. A full freezer can maintain its temperature for about 48 hours (24 hours if it’s half full) if the door remains closed.
  7. Transfer Perishables: If the outage is prolonged, consider transferring perishable items to a cooler with ice to keep them cold.
  8. Check Food Quality: Once the power is restored, check the quality of the food. Look for signs of spoilage like an off smell, unusual texture, or strange color. When in doubt, throw it out to avoid foodborne illness.
  9. Follow the Two-Hour Rule: Perishable food left at room temperature for more than 2 hours should be discarded to prevent bacterial growth. If the room temperature is above 90°F (32°C), discard perishable food after just one hour.
  10. Be Cautious with Perishables: Foods like meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, and leftovers are more prone to spoilage. Consider these items first when determining safety after a power outage.

Remember, safety comes first when dealing with food during power outages. When in doubt about the safety of any food item, it’s best to discard it rather than risk foodborne illness.

Notes for our customers...

You must call us at (800) 772-7786 ext. 6 after 24 hours of the initial outage.

Food will stay frozen in our commercial freezer for 48-72 hours

When power is restored, check that your freezer is on. In some cases, especially in garage locations, freezers may be plugged into breakers or GFI outlets that need to be reset. To reset, press the red reset button on the outlet and power will be restored.

For Questions or to Report an Outage Lasting Longer Than 24 Hours Please Call 800-772-7786 ext. 6