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Food Safety Focus (188th Issue, March 2022) – Article 4

Be Strategic in Storing Food

During the COVID-19 pandemic, some people may choose to buy and store food more than daily needed. However, food might rot and be wasted if not stored properly. Therefore, it is desirable to shop sensibly and keep a running list of meals and ingredients to avoid food waste. Consumers should also follow the first-in-first-out principle and storage instructions after purchase.

 Proper storage condition is essential in minimising food spoilage. For food items to be kept at room temperature such as canned food, cereals and potatoes, they should be stored in a cool and dry place. Perishable food should be stored in the refrigerator at 4°C or below or freezer at -18°C or below. To keep the refrigerator running efficiently, allow some space for proper circulation of cold air inside the refrigerator. Otherwise, overcrowding the refrigerator will render cooling ineffective, which may cause food spoilage and food safety concern. Store cooked/ready-to-eat food and raw food separately, e.g. reserving the top shelf of the refrigerator for cooked/ready-to-eat food, to prevent cross-contamination.