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FoodKeeper App Updated


Submitted by Vanetta Conn, CHES Family, Health & Well-Being Program Leader Cornell Cooperative Extension Franklin County

Looking for a quick and reliable source of quality information regarding the best way to keep your family safe from foodborne illness? Ever wondered about the best way to store foods and how long you can safely keep leftovers? In April 2015, Cornell University, the Food Marketing Institute and the Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) division of the USDA released the jointly developed FoodKeeper app for smartphones. The application shares specific storage timelines for more than 500 products, an increase from 400 items from the first release.

These products include baby foods, eggs, meat, poultry, fruits and vegetables, seafood and more. The application tells the best place or way to store foods safely whether pantry, fridge or freezer.

This free app is available for both Apple and Android phones at iTunes and Google Play respectively. Since its original release the application has been downloaded approximately 150,000 times.

Working with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), new features include food safety recalls. According to Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety, Carmen Rottenberg, “This is a great way for the public to stay informed when food is recalled. The FoodKeeper app is a very handy and easy to use tool; and it reflects USDA’s commitment to provide the public with information and knowledge to help them make informed decisions.”

In a press release from USDA, the following features are available through the application or online at

• Find specific storage timelines for the refrigerator, freezer and pantry, depending on the nature of the product.

• Learn cooking tips and methods for various types of meat, poultry and seafood products.

• Note in their device’s calendar when products were purchased and receive notifications when they are nearing the end of their recommended storage date.

• Submit a question to USDA using the ‘Ask Karen’ feature of the application. ‘Ask Karen’ is USDA’s 24/7 virtual representative. The system provides information about preventing foodborne illness, safe food handling and storage, and safe preparation of meat, poultry and egg products.

• Submit items not included in the database for consideration in future updates.

• Receive information on food safety recalls immediately when they’re announced or select to receive them daily or weekly.

For more ways to help your family make healthy food choices, learn ways to keep food safe and more, visit


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