Is frozen food safe?

Updated on June 2, 2021

Is Frozen Food Safe?

Food stored constantly at -18°C (0 °F) will always be safe. Only the quality suffers with lengthy freezer storage. Freezing keeps food safe by slowing the movement of molecules, causing microbes to enter a dormant stage. Freezing preserves food for extended periods because it prevents the growth of microorganisms that cause both food spoilage and food-borne illness.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), all frozen food is safe to eat, provided it was safe to eat at the time it was frozen. “Because freezing keeps food safe almost indefinitely, recommended storage times are for quality only,” says the USDA. “Food stored constantly at 0 degrees Fahrenheit will always be safe. Only the quality suffers with lengthy freezer storage.” [ref]

However, again, what you put in is what you get out. If the food was off or contaminated before freezing it down, it will still be contaminated when thawed. That is why it is important to purchase your frozen meals for cats and dogs from registered manufacturers, as they have to, by law, comply with food safety standards.

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