But according to food scientists, there’s only one truly safe way to thaw produce - and both camps are doing it wrong.
On a recent episode of BBC Two’s Inside The Factory, Abertay University professor Costas Stathopoulos recommended that goods be defrosted in the fridge over a number of hours. He explained that the cold temperature slows down bacterial growth and reduces the risk of an upset stomach.
“It is always the recommendation to follow the instructions on the packaging,” he said.
To show just how important it is for our health to practice good food hygiene, Stathopoulous compared two petri dishes containing samples of turkey meat, one defrosted in the fridge and the other at room temperature. The latter portion was proven to have twice the bacteria and even contained e.coli microorganisms.
“Everytime you defrost food, the bacteria multiplies,” the show’s co-presenter Cherry Healey added. “If you refreeze it, you’re also freezing more bacteria.”