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Keeping frozen foods safe during a power outage

File photo of a woman loading groceries into a refrigerator. GETTY IMAGES/BLEND IMAGES/Roberto Westbrook.

Is the food in your fridge still good after Monday’s downpour knocked out power to 300,000 people in Toronto?

Depending on how long the power outage lasts and on the type of food, some frozen and refrigerated goods may not be safe to eat.

To keep salvageable foods fresh, the City of Toronto is advising residents to keep their  refrigerator and freezer doors closed in order to maintain the temperature inside.

Without power, a closed refrigerator will be able to keep foods cool for four to six hours. A completely full freezer should be able to keep food frozen for about 48 hours, while a half-full freezer can do so for 24 hours, if the door is kept closed.

If perishable foods such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs and leftovers have been at temperatures above 4 C – the average refrigerator temperature – for longer than two hours they should be discarded.

Most foods in your freezer that have thawed may be refrozen if they still contain ice crystals or are at 4 C or below.

The partial thawing and refreezing of some foods may change or reduce their texture and flavour, but the food will still remain safe to eat, the city said.

Special to CityNews.ca