National Food Safety Education Month: Food Temperature Control

Sep. 8, 2022
Checking food temperature photo by Unsplash

Typically, the danger zone for bacterial growth occurs between 40 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit, making it extremely important to keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. While many of these bacteria should be mitigated during food processing, there is always a chance that they may be present. It is for this reason that proper handling, storing, and cooking of food is important in keeping everyone healthy. 
The Comprehensive Approach to Food Safety Graduate Course adequately examines this. This animal sciences course takes a deeper look at food safety challenges and solutions as experienced through the food chain from farm to consumer. 
As for food temperature control, CFI recommends the following major steps to help minimize risk: 

  • Keep cold foods cold and refrigerate food as soon as possible after cooking 

* Hot foods should be held at 135°F (57°C) or higher 

* Cold foods should be held at 41°F (5°C) or lower 

  • Cook foods to proper temperatures, utilizing a thermometer 
  • Ensure food is being properly thawed under refrigeration, submerged under cold running water, in the microwave (if cooked immediately afterward), or as a part of the cooking process (National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, 2022)
  • Report any known foodborne illnesses 

For a refresher on what you can do to keep yourself and your food safe, click here: