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The techniques for holding food vary depending on the type of food. In general, covers protect food from contamination and help maintain food temperatures. Cover food and install sneeze guards to protect food from contaminants. 

Hold temperature sensitive food at the right temperature. Hot food must be 135°F or higher. Cold food must be 41°F or lower. You are legally required to check temperatures at least every 4 hours. Throw out food not at 41°F or lower. 

In reality you must check temperatures every 2 hours to leave time for corrective action. Reheat food correctly, and then move it into a holding unit. Never use hot-holding equipment to reheat food unless it’s designed for it.


  1. Each food type has different holding

  2. Cold food must be held at 41°F or lower

  3. Hot food must be held at 135°F or higher

  4. Check foor temperatures every 2 hours to allow time for corrective action