TCS food is food that requires time-temperature control to prevent the growth of microorganisms and the production of toxins. These foods contains moisture and protein and has a neutral or slightly acidic pH. Most bacteria need nutrients such as carbohydrates or proteins to survive.
Inadequate food temperature controls are the most common factor contributing to outbreaks of foodborne disease. Disease causing bacteria grow particularly well in foods high in protein such as:
- Dairy Products
- Cooked Vegetables
- Cooked Cereal Grains
TCS Foods must be held either above 135°F or below 41°F to limit pathogenic microorganism growth or toxin formation.