Monday, January 14, 2008

Steps to Keeping your Kitchen Safe: Refrigerator Temperature

It's important to keep your refrigerator below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, (5 degrees Celsius) at all times. It's easy to check the temperature of your fridge; stick a thermometer on the middle shelf of your fridge for a few minutes and you'll see if you are above or below the 40 degree mark. If you have a newer fridge, there is probably a temperature gauge which is great. It's still not a bad idea to double check the temperature of the fridge with a thermometer to make sure it is fairly accurate.

Why is it important to keep the fridge below this temperature? If food is kept above 40 degrees Fahrenheit, it harbors the growth of bacteria. Below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, bacteria will stop multiplying. The fewer bacteria there are, the less likely anyone will get sick.

When you freeze food, bacteria growth stops completely. It won't kill the bacteria that is already on the food, but it will stop it from growing further. Freezing food at 0 degrees Fahrenheit, or -18 degrees Celsius will accomplish the goal of stopping the bacteria growth.


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