News Flash

Home

Posted on: July 1, 2022

Food Safety for Power Outages

Eat Safe Food after a Power Outage

Refrigerated or frozen foods may not be safe to eat after the loss of power. Find out what you can do to keep food safe during a power outage, and when you need to throw away food that could make you sick.

BEFORE:

  • Keep appliance thermometers in your refrigerator and freezer. The refrigerator should be at 40°F or below. The freezer should be at 0°F or below.

Prepare for emergencies or natural disasters:

  • Freeze containers of water and gel packs to help keep your food at 40°F or below.
  • Have a cooler and frozen gel packs handy in case you have to remove your food from the refrigerator to keep it cold.
  • Buy dry ice or block ice to keep your food cold in the refrigerator, if you think the power will be out for a long time.



DURING:

  • Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed.
  • If the doors stay closed, food will stay safe for up to:
    • 4 hours in a refrigerator.
    • 48 hours in a full freezer; 24 hours in a half-full freezer.
  • If the power has been out for 4 hours, and a cooler and ice are available, put refrigerated perishable foods in the cooler. To keep them at 40°F or below, add ice or a cold source like frozen gel packs.



AFTER:

  • Never taste food to determine if it is safe to eat. When in doubt, throw it out.
  • Throw out perishable food in your refrigerator (meat, fish, cut fruits and vegetables, eggs, milk, and leftovers) after 4 hours without power or a cold source like dry ice. Throw out any food with an unusual odor, color, or texture.
  • Check temperatures of food kept in coolers or your refrigerator with an added cold source. Throw out food above 40°
  • If you have an appliance thermometer in your freezer, check to see if it is still at 40 °F or below.
    • You can safely refreeze or cook thawed frozen food that still contains ice crystals or is at 40 °F or below.

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Home