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Flooded Foods

What foods to discard and what foods to save.

Discard if these foods come in direct contact with floodwaters:

  • Meat, poultry, fish and eggs
  • Fresh produce
  • Unopened jars with waxed paper, foil, cellophane or cloth
  • All foods in cardboard boxes or with cardboard seals, such as mayonnaise and salad dressing
  • Spices, seasonings and extracts
  • Opened containers and packages
  • Flour, sugar, grains, coffee and other staples in canisters
  • Canned foods that are dented, leaking, bulging or rusted
  • Screw-topped or crimp-topped glass jars including home-canned food in glass jars and bottles as well as all jam, jellies, syrups, etc.

Save:

  • Undamaged canned goods are safe if you sanitize the containers.
  • Mark the contents on can lid with indelible ink.
  • Remove the labels because paper can harbor dangerous bacteria.
  • Wash the cans in a strong detergent solution with a scrub brush.
  • Immerse containers for 15 minutes in a bleach solution (2 teaspoons bleach per quart of warm water).
  • Allow containers to air-dry.
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