While you can freeze almost every food, the length of time it’s in the freezer, how it’s packaged, and whether it’s raw or cooked will affect how long the food remains fresh. It’s important to understand how to properly store food in your commercial freezer, not only for the safety of your consumers but to prevent food from going to waste. All Temp, your Orlando refrigeration experts, can help you make sure that you’re properly freezing your food.
Any food that is properly frozen, handled, and stored in a freezer at 0°F, or -18°C, is safe to eat. Once food is frozen, it remains safe to eat indefinitely. However, food quality can diminish. Follow the table below to ensure your food stays fresh:
- Bacon and sausage: One to two months
- Casseroles: Two to three months
- Gravy, meat, or poultry: Two to three months
- Soups and stews: Two to three months
- Cooked Meat: Two to three months
- Uncooked ground meat: Three to four months
- Uncooked poultry giblets: Three to four months
- Cooked poultry: Four months
- Uncooked poultry parts: Nine months
- Uncooked meat, including, steak, chops, and roasts: Four to twelve months
- Uncooked wild game: Eight to twelve months
- Egg whites or egg substitutes: One year
- Uncooked whole poultry: One year
Frozen food remains safe to eat, regardless of how long it’s been frozen. However, the quality of the food will go down — but not the qualities you may be thinking of. While most people believe that frozen food has fewer nutrients than fresh food, freezing does not actually reduce nutrients. There’s little difference in a food’s protein value before and after freezing. However, freezing does reduce qualities such as tenderness, flavor, aroma, juiciness, and color. Freezer burn, which occurs when food is not securely packaged before freezing, is another food quality issue that frozen foods can present. While food that is freezer burnt is still safe to eat, it significantly lowers the food quality.
By ensuring your food is properly frozen, you’re protecting both your customers and your wallet. If you’re concerned about preventing food waste or think your commercial freezer may need repair, contact the Orlando refrigeration experts at All Temp. You can reach us at (813) 630-9400 or contact us online.