Most people don’t consider how refrigerators can be a potential source of food contamination. Since there are several shelves and the food is all kept at a cool temperature, you as a food handler or supervisor might not consider the refrigerator as a possible source of food contamination. However, if proper protocols aren’t followed, contamination can happen in the refrigerator just as easily as it can in any other area of the kitchen.

What is contaminated food?

It’s critical to comprehend what contamination actually entails in order to comprehend how it happens in the refrigerator. When a food is tainted by another substance, it is said to be contaminated and becomes unfit for consumption.

Types of contamination:

  • Physical contamination, often known as food degradation brought on by the presence of an object
  • Chemical contamination or the presence of a chemical agent that causes food to spoil
  • Biological contamination that includes the presence of hazardous bacteria, viruses, or organic materials

How to Avoid Contamination in the Refrigerator

Follow these guidelines and recommendations, as well as those in your food safety plan, Ways to Avoid Food Contamination in the Fridge:

  • Make sure that both you and your team have received training in online food safety policies and practices, including how to prevent contamination
  • Store food in sealed containers that are properly labelled and sterilized
  • Make sure the refrigerator is completely empty before cleaning and sanitizing, and make sure spills are cleaned up right away.
  • Before handling and preparing food kept in the refrigerator, thoroughly wash your hands
  • To stop juices from spilling onto other items, store shellfish, meat, and raw chicken on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator in food-safe, covered containers or sealed plastic bags. 
  • Place prepared and ready-to-eat food on top of raw food in the fridge 

Final Thoughts

Food contamination can also happen when dangerous bacteria or chemicals are transferred from one food to another, known as cross-contamination. Cross-contamination can happen between equipment and food, people and food, and different foods. Regardless of the transfer method, the food product is no longer safe to consume.

Food allergens or chemicals can all make consumers ill or result in choking hazards or accidents, making contaminated food a severe health risk. Food contamination is quite common in a commercial kitchen; therefore, it is crucial to take an Online Food Safety Supervisory Course in Victoria.

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