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Storing Food After Delivery

26 January 2024

Storing food after delivery is very important when food safety is considered and the food should be stored as quickly as it can be put away. For instance, in a previous eLearn Safety blog post Receiving Food Delivery from 19th January 2024 we talked about the importance of proper and planned handling of food deliveries. Most importantly, it is very important to note that once the food is accepted from delivery operators it should be unpacked from the outside packaging before storage. In addition, frozen foods should always be stored first. It is extremely important to remember that raw meat and ready-to-eat foods should be handled and stored separately. All food handling staff should be competent and trained in safe food handling. An easy and convenient way to achieve this is by taking one of eLearn Safety fully online Food Safety courses.


Plan for Storing Food After Delivery

Never tightly pack food in storage areas. For instance, food should always be kept at least 15cm above the floor and at least 5cm away from the walls. This is because it will make cleaning and pest inspections easier.

In addition, keep records of all food temperatures. If you observe high temperatures, report this immediately to the Supervisor/Manager. This can be the result of a delay in storing food, allowing it to warm up to room temperature. Such delays can be avoided by having allocated time slots for staff to store food correctly.


Contamination is Dangerous

Food contamination is very dangerous! You must remember to:

  • Keep raw meats in a separate refrigerator or on the bottom shelf. This is to avoid contaminating anything below.
  • Clean soil from vegetables before storage as soil can contain dangerous bacteria.
  • Check all seals of fridge and freezer doors are working properly and are clean. Fridges and freezers should be checked every day and detailed, stringent temperature records maintained. If you are using a walk-in freezer – always make sure that the door is closed properly behind you.


Stock Rotation

Stock rotation is important when we talk about storing food after delivery. Therefore, you should always practice a FIFO system (First In First Out). In addition, you should label each item so that anyone who would check for these items knows when it was delivered and its shelf life. For instance, never sell food that has passed its Use-By date and make sure that all the correct storage requirements are followed.

For additional information about Use-By and Best-Before dates please check eLearn Safety blog entry Shelf-life of Food Products from 10th March 2023. In addition, you might find some very useful information on Teagasc website and their page Shelf Life of Food Products from 9th January 2022.


Basic Storage Rules

Always remember to:

  • Store all frozen food at below -18°.
  • Store all fresh food at below 5°.
  • Store dry goods quickly.
  • Keep fridge and/or freezer doors open for the shortest time possible.
  • Immediately report a fridge or freezer malfunction. A breakdown can be an expensive and serious food safety hazard.


Online Food Safety Training

Please remember – it is a legal requirement that staff who are involved in a food environment are trained and/or supervised commensurate with their work activity!

Myelearnsafety offers fully online Food Safety (HACCP) courses.

To find out more, please check our Courses page.

Alternatively, should you need any additional information, please do not hesitate to let us know via email