Food Safety

Food Safety

Keep Food Safe During an OutageFood Safety

If electric power is interrupted, food in a refrigerator can keep four to six hours. Do not unnecessarily open the refrigerator door. 

Also avoid opening the freezer. Food will stay frozen in a fully loaded freezer for 36 to 48 hours if the doors remain closed. If the freezer is half-full, the food will generally keep 24 hours. Moving meats, cheeses and milk to the freezer will help keep them colder and will help to fill up your freezer section. You may also want to wrap a blanket around your fridge/freezer to help insulate and preserve the temperature inside.

If thawing meat has ice crystals and is cold, it may be re-frozen. If there are no ice crystals, cook meats immediately and freeze the food after cooking it. Discard any thawed food that has risen to room temperature and remained there more than two hours.

Keep in stock a three-day supply of canned, ready-to-eat foods in your cupboard, along with a manual can opener in case of emergencies. Include canned juices, milk and soup, as well as fruits, meats and vegetables. Stock also a few comfort/stress foods handy, such as sweetened cereals, instant coffee, hard candy or cookies. Also include high-energy foods such as peanut butter and granola bars.

Having a three-day supply of water, one gallon per person per day, is also encouraged.

Consider buying a camp stove and fuel which can be used outdoors in the event that you cannot cook on your electric stove.