Storing cold food safely

Are you ensuring that cold food is stored safely at your food business?Competent Food Safety Supervisor ensure that potentially hazardous foods are stored safely.

Potentially hazardous foods are foods that might contain food poisoning bacteria and are capable of making people sick if they are not stored at correct temperatures. Potentially hazardous foods need to be stored below 5°C when in cold storage.

Potentially hazardous foods

So what are potentially hazardous foods? Raw and cooked meats or foods containing meat like curries and stews. Milk and other dairy products including custard and dairy based desserts. Seafood (excluding live seafood) is a potentially hazardous food. Processed fruits and vegetables (salads) and cooked rice and pasta are also on the list.

Potentially hazardous food must be stored at 5°C or colder to prevent bacteria from multiplying. When potentially hazardous foods are left between 5°C and 60°C bacteria is able to multiply quickly.

Controls and monitoring

  • store all potentially hazardous foods in cold storage areas under Temperature control;
  • check and record the temperature of food inside the refrigerator using a thermometer — it should always be 5°C or colder;
  • make sure that the cold storage area is not overcrowded with food, as air will not be able to circulate and keep food cold;
  • never store food on the floor of a cold room, it can make it difficult to clean and contamination may occur. It is also not conducive to good air flow around goods;

Ensuring that cold food stores are managed correctly is a fundamental requirment of a successful food business.  Complete your Food Safety Supervisor course online to assist you meet the statutory requirements of the Food Act 2006.