Potentially Hazardous Food
Potentially Hazardous Food is a term used by food safety organizations to classify foods that require time-temperature control to keep them safe for human consumption. A PHF is a food that:
- Contains moisture - usually regarded as a water activity greater than 0.85
- Contains protein
- Is neutral to slightly acidic - typically having a pH between 4.6 and 7.5
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Food Code identifies the following examples of PHF's:
- Meat (beef, pork, lamb)
- Poultry (chicken, turkey, duck)
- Fish
- Shellfish and crustaceans
- Eggs (except those treated to eliminate Salmonella)
- Milk and dairy products
- Heat-treated plant food (cooked rice, beans, or vegetables)
- Baked potatoes
- Certain synthetic ingredients
- Mushrooms
- Cut Tomatoes (when pH is 4.6 or above)
- Cut Leafy Greens
- Raw sprouts
- Tofu and soy-protein foods
- Untreated garlic and oil mixtures
- Cut melons, including watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew.
Since these foods can harbor pathogenic microorganisms and permit their growth or the production of toxins, special care must be taken to keep them out of the temperature danger zone for as long as possible. Time is another factor that can be controlled to minimize the chances of pathogenic outbreaks. Things such as salts, sugars, and brine solutions can be used to alter the moisture or acidity of PHF's to make them more shelf stable and were especially popular prior to refrigeration technology. A HACCP is a more modern approach to food safety in PHF's, especially as they relate to the food service industry.
In Australia, Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) defines potentially hazardous food to mean food that has to be kept at certain temperatures to minimize the growth of any pathogenic microorganisms that may be present in the food or to prevent the formation of toxins in the food.
Under Australian regulations, the following are examples of potentially hazardous foods:
- Raw and cooked meat or foods containing meat, such as casseroles, curries and lasagne;
- Dairy products, for example, milk, custard and dairy based desserts;
- Seafood (excluding live seafood);
- Processed fruits and vegetables, for example, salads;
- Cooked rice and pasta;
- Foods containing eggs, beans, nuts or other protein rich foods, such as quiche and soy products;
- Foods that contain these foods, such as sandwiches and rolls.

This is an excerpt from the article Potentially Hazardous Food from the Wikipedia free encyclopedia. A list of authors is available at Wikipedia.
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Evaluation & Definition of Potentially Hazardous Foods
Evaluation and Definition of Potentially Hazardous Foods.
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Page1of2 *Note: This document is for educational purposes only and should not be considered a replacement to reading the Food Code and Michigan Food Law of 2000.
Potentially Hazardous Food - University…
Potentially Hazardous Food. Potentially Hazardous Food is any food or food ingredient, whether natural or synthetic, that is capable of supporting the rapid growth of ...
Potentially Hazardous Food - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Potentially Hazardous Foods
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Foodborne Disease Handbook: Viruses, Parasites, Pathogens, and Haccp
Foodborne Disease Handbook: Viruses, Parasites, Pathogens, and Haccp
Yiu H. Hui, 2001
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The HACCP Food Safety Employee Manual
The HACCP Food Safety Employee Manual
Tara Paster, 2006
A Potentially Hazardous Food (PHF) is any food capable of allowing germs to grow. These PHFs have the potential to ... Potentially Hazardous Food requires strict time and temperature controls to stay safe. Food has been time– temperature ...
Essentials of Food Science
Essentials of Food Science
Vickie A. Vaclavik, Elizabeth W. Christian, 2008
Animal and plant foods that support the growth of microorganisms are classified by the FDA as Potentially Hazardous Foods (PHF), defined as follows: (a) “Potentially Hazardous Food” means a Food that is natural or synthetic and that requires ...
Food Safety: A Reference Handbook
Food Safety: A Reference Handbook
Nina Redman, 2007
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