The increasing prevalence of self-checkout lanes and reusable shopping bags means bagging groceries is not necessarily left to the professionals. 

Proper bagging techniques are essential to keep your groceries fresh, safe, and intact for your enjoyment. Many of these guidelines stem from common food safety principles, like separation of food types and controlling temperature. Here are a few tips: 

  1. Raw meat should always be bagged separately to avoid cross-contamination. Keep in mind that just because raw meat is packaged in plastic does not preclude potential contamination.
  2. Keep like temperatures together. For example, place frozen foods, refrigerated foods, and room temperature foods in separate bags. 
  3. Bag produce separately with heavier items at the bottom.
  4. Bag delicate foods like breads and chips separately to avoid damage.
  5. Keep eggs separate from foods you’re going to eat raw in case they crack.
  6. Get perishable items such as meat and dairy into the refrigerator as soon as possible. Avoid running additional errands after purchasing groceries.

If you use reusable bags, here are a few additional items to consider. 

  • Wrap meats in a separate bag before placing them in the reusable bag to avoid spreading pathogens.
  • Clean reusable bags frequently to ensure they remain germ free.

These simple actions can help keep your groceries safe and delicious from cart to home.

 

In This Article

  1. Food Safety and Defense

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