The science of freezing food acts as a pause button to preserve and extend the shelf life of foods. It is a quick and convenient way to prevent food waste. Lowering the temperature around the food prevents microorganisms inhibited and continuing to grow in food.
As you place food inside the freezer, it is important to place a label on it. This rules out the confusion and any food accident.
Defrosting food must not take place outside the fridge as it may stimulate microorganisms to grow faster. To begin with, place the food in a clean, suitable container; overnight in the fridge. However, if the frozen food is on its use-by date, defrost it still inside the fridge and consume it as soon as possible—but not more than 24 hours after defrosting.
In addition, defrosted foods cooked above 75°C should only be refrozen once.
Although power interruption is something you are not expected to happen, it is still important to take precautions when it comes to frozen foods. Keep the following in mind:
- If the fridge door is shut for two days, a freezer full of food can contain itself;
- Again, if the fridge door is shut, a half-full freezer can contain itself for about a day.
Note that once the power is back, it is advisable to check the condition and temperature of the food to determine if they are still safe to consume.
It is recommended that the freezer is -18°C or less. Yet it is better to consult your appliance manufacturer because products vary from one another. Also, it also depends on the appliance’s capability and star rating on how long food can stay inside the fridge. Generally speaking, food can stay up to 6 months inside the fridge.
To give you an idea, here is the guide to understanding the star rating of freezer appliances.
Note: Asterisk represents a star.
* -6°C equals up to one-week food storing
**-12°C equals up to one-month food storing
***-18°C equals up to 3 months of food storing
****-18°C is suitable for 3-6 months of food storing