Variety of grocery products fruits meat cheese and bread

There are a number of things you need to prepare yourself for when dealing with a power outage. One of which is bacteria contamination or growth in food if it;s not kept in a safe zone for temperature. Manager of the Emergency Management Program with the Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit Kelly Magnusson says there are restriction on certain foods.

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With freezer goods, food can last between 24 to 48 hours, depending on how full your freezer is. If the freezer foods thaw, Magnusson says they are still safe so long as the foods are under four degrees. They can also be re-frozen if there are ice crystals remaining on the food items. You can’t really smell or see the bacteria in foods. Magnusson says there are times when it’s necessary to throw your food in the garbage.

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Magnusson also says if you’ve been in the dark for more than four to six hours, it’s best to throw out the perishable foods in your fridge.

Anytime a power outage occurs, tips on emergency preparedness is released. These tips could include a first aid or an emergency kit. However, having a food kit prepared is also an essential item to have if you expect to be in the dark for several hours. Magnusson says there are things you can do to plan ahead.

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The health unit has more information on food safety on the health unit’s website.