Food Safety & Preservation

Food Safety During Power Outages

It’s winter storm season! A storm can cause damage to your home, and loss of electricity, gas, and water. During a power outage, there may be a lot more on your mind than food safety, but it’s still important!

Be prepared:
+ Having appliance thermometers already running will help you closely monitor the status of your fridge and freezer.
+ It’s also a good idea to have a cooler or two at the ready, as well as ice or frozen gel packs to maintain a safe temperature in the cooler. 
+ Research where dry ice or block ice are available near you.

Things to remember:
+ The refrigerator will hold a safe temperature for about four hours.
+ Your freezer, if packed full, will hold food at a safe temperature for about 48 hours with no power — at half full, the time decreases to 24 hours. 
+ Food is safe to refreeze if it still has ice crystals or if the freezer did not rise above 40 °F. You can improve the chances that food will remain safe by keeping the doors closed.

Check out and share these food safety tips to help households stay safe during this winter storm season.

Safe & Healthy Food for Your Family from UW-Madison, Division of Extension
Many Food Preservation resources!

Here are some ways to preserve some common foods.
Canning Frozen Tomatoes
Orange Marmalade
Dividing & Chilling Hot Foods
Reheating Leftovers in a Slow Cooker
Preserving Cranberries
Kitchen Gifts
Is it Safe to Can Breads and Cakes?

Other Food Safety Resources:

Food Preservation:
Extension offers a variety of resources to help you preserve food safely.

  • Pressure Canner testing is available Monday through Friday during the office hours of 8:00-4:30. There is no charge to have your canner tested. We are sorry, but we no longer rent pressure canners.
  • We can also guide you to recipes tested by reliable sources, and advice on how to preserve food safely (see above links)

Contact 715-839-4712 if you have questions

Website on Food Preservation:

Other resources:

For many free food preservation resources, please visit The UW-Madison Division of Extension’s Learning Store, especially the Food and Nutrition page.

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