Is It Better To Refrigerate Or Freeze To Prevent Bacteria On Foods?

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Author: Sofia PC

Grade Level: 6th - 8th; Type: Microbiology


In this experiment students will find out whether freezing or refrigerating destroys more bacteria. This is essential to consuming safe and germ-free food.

Research Questions:

How does a refrigerator/ freezer work

Before refrigerators and freezers were invented, people cooled their food and kept them from spoiling by putting it in ice and snow. This was obvious not convenient and does not nearly have the same power as a mechanic refrigerator/ freezer does.


  • Raw meat of the same size
  • Refrigerator/ freezer combo
  • Microscope
  • Thermometer
  • Pen and paper for notes

Experimental Procedure:

  1. Take the temperature of the freezer and the refrigerator. Write this down.
  2. Put one of the fresh meats in the freezer compartment/section and the other in the refrigerator section for at least 1 week.
  3. After at least 1 week, observe the meats in a well slide under a microscope. Look for bacteria. Bacteria can be identified because of their stringy shape and one-celled cell structure with no true nucleus.
  4. Decide which meat has more bacteria.
  5. Evaluate your results.

Terms/Concepts: Refrigeration; Freezing; Bacteria; Food safety; Temperature


Myers, Richard (2003). The Basics of ChemistryGreenwood Publishing Group. p. 14. ISBN 0313316643.

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