Refrigerating perishable foods can keep them safe to eat for a while, but only if you use and pack your refrigerator properly.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that you:
- Set your refrigerator’s temperature between 32 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Your freezer should be set at 0 degrees Fahrenheit or lower.
- Place all eggs, meat, milk, fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator within two hours. If the weather is very hot, make it one hour. Throw away foods that have been unrefrigerated for longer than these times.
- If you’re refrigerating leftovers while they are still warm, separate them into several small, shallow containers to help them cool more quickly.
- Keep any raw meat on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. Make sure it’s away from any produce or other foods that do not need to be cooked.
- When marinating or thawing foods, do it in the refrigerator and not on the counter.