Cobb & Douglas Public Health wants residents to keep food safe during a winter weather emergency with the following recommendations from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
- Have a refrigerator thermometer.
- Keep on hand a few days worth of ready-to-eat foods that are shelf stable and do not require additional cooking or cooling.
When the Power Goes Out
- Keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible.
- A refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours if it is unopened.
- Refrigerators should be kept at 40° F or below for proper food storage.
Once the Power is Restored
- Check the temperature inside of your refrigerator and freezer.
- If an appliance thermometer was kept in the freezer, check the temperature when the power comes back on. If the freezer thermometer reads 40° F or below, the food is safe and may be refrozen.
- If a thermometer has not been kept in the freezer, check each package of food to determine its safety. You can’t rely on appearance or odor. If the food still contains ice crystals or is 40° F or below, it is safe to refreeze or cook.
- Refrigerated food should be safe as long as the power was out for no more than 4 hours. Keep the refrigerator door closed as much as possible.
- Discard any perishable food (such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs or leftovers) that has been above 40° F for two hours or more.
For more information regarding food safety, visit: www.fda.gov.