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  4. Maintain Food Safety and Cut Food Waste Reference Guide

Food waste is a major concern. Wasted food is a huge challenge to our natural resources, our environment, and our pocketbooks. Between 30 and 40 percent of food in the United States goes uneaten – as much as 20 pounds of food per person per month. That means Americans are throwing out the equivalent of $165 billion in food each year.

Have a friendly competition with your friends or family members to see who can go the longest without any food waste.

A to Z Food Safety Reference Guide

Whether you are a home cook, a professional chef, or a recipe writer, there are some easy steps you can take to help keep your food safe all the way from the grocery store to the kitchen table.

Becoming food safety savvy is as easy as A–B–C! Let your fingers do the walking through this user-friendly reference guide that offers you a wealth of invaluable, up-to-date food safety information. Also included are in-depth sections on the step-by-step journey food travels from the farm to the table; how to prepare and handle food safely; the Fight BAC!TM Campaign’s 4 Simple Steps to Food Safety: Clean, Separate (Combat Cross-Contamination), Cook, and Chill; and fascinating food safety careers!

pdfA to Z Food Safety Reference Guide

pdfRefrigerator and Freezer Storage Chart


Video: Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill!

Make sure to keep hot foods hot, and cold foods cold. This information provides safety tips for handling and preparing common foods, and what to avoid and how to make better choices to prevent food poisoning and food waste.

Information and Resources

FoodSafety.gov Charts: Food Safety at a Glance

How long can you store leftovers in the refrigerator? How can you tell when chicken breasts are done? How long does it take to cook a turkey? Check out these charts for fast answers.

FoodSafety.gov: FoodKeeper App

The FoodKeeper helps you understand food and beverages storage. It will help you maximize the freshness and quality of items. By doing so you will be able to keep items fresh longer than if they were not stored properly. It is also available as a mobile application for Android and Apple devices.

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 Public Downloads

All items are free to view, share, and download.

Public Downloads - Español (Spanish)

When available, we provide all our content with a Spanish version in our public download section. You can find additional material from sources listed in all our articles.