Meat and fish
Relegate these products to the fridge’s meat drawer or a drip-proof tray on the lowest shelf, so uncooked juices don’t leak and possibly contaminate other foods with bacteria such as salmonella or E. coli. For extra protection, “when you buy fish or meat, put the packaged product in a bag and then store it in the refrigerator in that bag,” says Nielsen. “If it drips, it’s more likely to stay inside the bag than spill out.” Cold cuts need to be kept particularly cold, and should be wrapped and placed in the meat drawer–never in the fridge door. Unused cold cuts will keep for two weeks, but once the package is opened, they’re good for three to four days.
If you’ve bought large quantities of raw meat, use your freezer for safe storage. “To freeze, take the meat out of the package it came in, put it in a food-grade plastic freezer bag, squeeze out any air and then double-wrap the whole package with foil,” says Watson. Don’t forget to label each parcel identifying the meat, plus the date it was frozen. Fresh steaks, roasts, fish, pork and chicken will last only two to four days in the fridge, but they can be kept for several months in the freezer.