4-3. Food Protection and Storage, Continued
Store food properly to minimize food contamination and to improve food shelf
life. Use the following guidelines for storing food in containers:
Store raw or prepared food in a clean, covered container if you remove the
food from the container or the package in which you obtained it.
Ensure that container covers are impervious and nonabsorbent. An exception
to this requirement is that you may use clean linens or napkins to cover bread
Cover solid cuts of meat to protect them when you store them. An exception
to this requirement is that you may hang uncovered quarters or sides of meat
on clean, sanitized hooks.
DO NOT store any food products beneath meat.
Prevent the cross-contamination of dissimilar species of raw meat or raw and
cooked items that you store in the same refrigeration unit. To do so,
physically separate them or use another effective product protection
Store containers or bulk lots of food on clean racks above the floor. You may
also use dollies or other easily cleanable surfaces. Ensure that these racks are
6 inches (15 centimeters) above the floor surface.
DO NOT store food and containers of food under exposed or unprotected
sewer lines or water lines (except required automatic fire protection sprinkler
heads). You are prohibited from storing food in toilet rooms or vestibules.
When existing facilities violate this requirement, have the IMA determine the
need for drip pans or other corrective actions.
Store nonacidic bulk foods (cooking oil, syrup, salt, and sugar) in their
original product packages or containers. If transfer is required, label the
storage containers with the common names of the foods.
Store bulk flour, sugar, and other similar items in disposable, food-grade
plastic liners in metal storage cans. Ensure that these liners meet National
Sanitation Foundation (NSF) requirements.
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