Analysis of Consumer Food-Handling Practices from Grocer to Home Including Transport and Storage of Selected Foods

Consumers were interviewed about how they purchase, transport, store, and otherwise handle food. Emphasis was placed on handling of cold foods and home refrigeration. More than 70% of consumers took steps to protect cold foods during purchase and transport and more than 90% claimed to put away cold foods first. Only 7% of consumers used coolers to protect cold foods during transport. How consumers stored a variety of foods was determined and evaluated. Few consumers knew their own or correct refrigerator temperature and few had refrigerator thermometers. A second interview and refrigerator checklist were completed in 200 of the consumers' homes at least a year later. Researchers judged that circumstances that might allow for cross-contamination existed in 41% of the refrigerators examined. A large percentage of refrigerators were above recommended temperatures. There is a need to disseminate current food-safety and home-refrigeration information as consumer lifestyles adapt to the changing global economy. Consumers need to assume responsibility for temperature control of foods within their homes.

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Journal of Food Distribution Research, 36, 1
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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2019-08-26

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