Food Safety: What to Save and What to Throw Out

This photo was taken with an iPhone 5 (this is a tech blog, after all).

This was the view in a local Target, yesterday.

You are looking at one row of freezers. There about 5 rows of freezers and they all looked like this.


The power was off for a while, and food spoils.

Grocery stores, school districts, restaurants and individual families are all finding themselves in the awful situation of trashing mass quantities of food in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.

It is tempting to hold on to some things. But there is no “maybe”. Better to be safe than sorry. Toss it!!!

Personally I don’t think I’ll be eating in a restaurant for a little while, making sure that when I do I won’t be served any “we kept this because we thought it might be ok” kind of food.

I decided to test Siri and see how good she would be at finding such important information.

I asked Siri “what food can I keep when the electricity goes out?”

She gave me a surprisingly good number of websites to explore.

I asked her in several other ways, sometimes specifying a particular type of food, and each time she delivered slightly different results. All quite good and relevant to the question.

You don’t have to participate in a Superstorm to have power-outage troubles. Probably everyone experiences this at one time or another.

Here is a link to a very thorough list for Food Safety. There are clear instructions on what you can save and what you have to toss.

Slide down the page for detailed “When to Save and When to Throw It Out”

Great information for us all!


20 thoughts on “Food Safety: What to Save and What to Throw Out

    • It does happen to everyone sometimes, that’s for sure. And when it’s very cold (or very hot) it is extra disturbing. We really depend on it, don’t we? Knowing what to do about your food is terribly important. No need to compound the misery with getting sick!

  1. Thanks for the list. I have probably thrown out many foods in the past that could have been kept but I’ve always felt ‘better safe than sorry’. No food poisoning going on in my house. 🙂

  2. This is v interesting and frightening. Here in Britain, when I did basic chef training we were legally obliged to earn a Food Hygeine Certificate I understand people’s choice to err on the side of caution but if you’re in average health, you can get away with a lot especially in a domestic kitchen. The risks rise in commercial kitchens because hazards can more easily be overlooked.

  3. That’s very useful information! Even when the power doesn’t go out, I am never quite sure how long stuff can stay in the fridge and I am not one to wait until it grows a beard and starts talking back before I toss it.

    • I’m never sure either, but I never keep anything too long. If I buy cold cuts, I usually only get 1/4 pound so I don’t have it sitting around too long. The only beard in this house is on the husband!

  4. What a great item to post about! I bet this is something some people might overlook as I’m sure there are a zillion and one things to attend to after the storm died down.

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