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Food Handling

potatoesHere’s how we keep it all safe

Every person we serve is important. So every item we distribute must be handled properly whether it is a food item or a non-food grocery product.

From food-safety regulations and practices to non-food staging, this is how we do it. And how you can, too.

Food-refrigeration temperatures

Gleaners operates a 14,400 square foot refrigerator that has its own the dock.

Frozen or refrigerated product orders are staged and held in the refrigeration units until pick-up. Fresh produce is also stored in a refrigeration unit, along with bread products and other perishable foods.

But some of our basic guidelines work for any refrigerator, including yours:

  • Refrigerators should be set to maintain a temperature of 40°F or below.
  • An appliance thermometer should be kept inside to monitor and ensure that the temperature is correct.
  • In case of a power outage, the food is safe if the refrigerator is still running at 40°F when the power returns. Foods held at temperatures above 40°F for more than two hours should not be consumed.

Non-food staging and handling

To prevent cross-contamination from leakage and other threats, Gleaners’ storage of all non-food-related items is separate and distinct from food products.

In any home or facility, separate storage is crucial for non-food items such as health and beauty aides, diapers and especially cleaning products.

Resources (with additional charts): http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Factsheets/Refrigeration_&_Food_Safety/index.asp#13