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Guidelines For The Safe Handling, Cooking And Storage Of Food

Guidelines for Handling Leftover Food Safely

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Keep hot foods hot (above 140 degrees Fahrenheit), and cold foods cold (below 40 degrees Fahrenheit).

Don't leave perishable foods out too long.

  • Do not leave perishable foods out for more than two hours, or for more than 1 hour if the air temperature is above 90 degrees Fahrenheit. This is especially important for picnics, barbecues, buffets, etc.

Leftovers are food too.

  • Leftovers should be divided into small units and stored in shallow containers for quick cooling. Leftovers may also be stored wrapped tightly in bags. Leftovers should be refrigerated within two hours of cooking.
  • When reheating leftovers, heat thoroughly to a temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Bring soups, sauces, and gravies to a rolling boil.
  • Use leftovers within 3 to 4 days.
  • Discard anything left out too long.

Never taste or smell food to determine if it is safe.

  • If harmful bacteria is present, using the smell test can fill your airways and lungs with the bacteria.

If in doubt, throw it out.

  • For anyone with a serious illness there is too much risk associated with unsafe food.

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