Food storage "system" - Opinion's please

Discussion in 'General Food and Foraging Discussion' started by Tango, Jan 1, 2011.

  1. Tango

    Tango New Member

    1
    0
    Hello all,

    A friend close to me has been advised by an "expert" in preparedness as to how food can be stored long term. I have issues with this "system" but I will hold back and look for other comments that I hope I can forward along to him and perhaps he will listen.

    The system is as follows..

    Buy bulk dry goods, rice, beans, wheat etc at costco. You then scoop the product into 1 gallon ziplock bags and squeeze out the air and seal. You then freeze the 1 gallon bags for 3 days, pull them out and let them come to room temperature. (dry out?) Then they are loaded into the orange (not food grade) 5 gallon buckets you get from home depot. The orange snap on lids are put on and your done!

    My associate says the freeze has "killed everything" and the food is good for long term storage.

    I have expressed my reservations about this method, but am looking for outside comments to forward on. The preparedness expert claims to be a green beret which somehow makes hm an expert in my associates eyes.

    Help?
     
  2. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

    3,104
    98
    There are those that will disagree with me, but here's what I do..

    I buy flour, rice, beans, sugar, salt, in large quantities...I don't have a Sam's card and watch prices elsewhere..

    I get the gray Lowe's 5 gallon buckets...the manufacturer guaranteed they were food grade..3.54 each..(I don't use ziplok...takes too much space..I tried it)...
    I just pour product in and at the bottom of the bucket, and in the center, and on top of my product, I sprinkle in a little Diatomaceous Earth...it takes care of parasites.

    I label with sharpie (on masking tape) on the outside of bucket..
    name of product,
    quantity/servings,
    cost to me,
    date,
    and directions (like for instant milk).

    example:((Rice--DEC./2010--5 lb. bag @3.20--30 lbs.--D.E.added))

    I was told DO NOT put D.E. in salt or sugar...it dries it out and you get a brick when open bucket.:gaah:
    This drying out process is what kills parasites/bugs in the bucket.

    I hope I haven't confused you...it's really easier than using ziploks and freezing and you can do day of purchase instead of waitning for dry out of product. Much simpler.:congrat:

    California??? It's a Cal. contact who got me started storing food 2 years ago---I thank her every week for enlightening me.

    Note: D.E. is extremely inexpensive..if you order online..you can still start storing, just remember to open bucket when you get D.E. and add to the product...then mark label as D.E. added!!
    I get ready for some oats?? I open, siphon out a quart or two, close lid..good as new.
    I also have been fortunate to find an IGA with deli, get 2 and 5 gallon buckets for $1 and wash--they have great lids, easier to open.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2011

  3. Herbalpagan

    Herbalpagan Well-Known Member

    252
    0
    I vaccuum seal or use mylar with o2 absorbers on most everything.
     
  4. vn6869

    vn6869 Afraid, very afraid

    145
    0
    Ditto, If it isn't already canned (Mountain House, etc.)
     
  5. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

    6,764
    108
    I'm with you. Our grains are stored in 5 gal buckets with, as we call it, "dirt"(DE). Sugar and salt go directly in the buckets with nothing added. Anything we dehydrate and don't plan on using in the immediate future gets vacuum packed and dropped in a bucket with a little "dirt" in the bottom and then a dusting on top.
     
  6. goshengirl

    goshengirl Supporting Member

    3,312
    4
    I am concerned by the idea that freezing "kills everything" - my understanding is that freezing is to stop enzyme action, and once the food is thawed, the enzymes get active again. Genuine freeze-drying is a commercial process, and cannot be achieved by putting something in a home freezer for a few days. Truly freeze-dried meat can be stored on a shelf, but meat frozen in a home freezer cannot be taken out and stored on a shelf.

    Others have given good advice about bucket use/vacuum sealing and DE, oxygen, mylar, etc. I just wanted to poke a hole at the idea that sticking something in the freezer for three days "kills everything" - while that thought is harmless with grains, it's dangerous to start thinking that other foods can be put in a freezer for a few days to make them ready for long-term storage. ;)
     
  7. BadgeBunny

    BadgeBunny Well-Known Member

    418
    0
    I am not quite this hard core. Anything that is going to be used within 12 to 18 months I simply write the expiration date on the front for canned stuff (or the date bought for bulk stuff like rice, beans, flour) and stack or place in sterlite containers on shelves.

    The room I use for my pantry (actually a spare bedroom on the southwest corner of the house) doesn't get warmer than 65-70 F, even in August and unless I am in there the light stays off. Of course windows have foam board and insulated curtains in them. It may be overkill but there is clear plastic on the outside of the storm windows. (The windows face the back yard so I am not worried about appearances there.)

    I have had no problem with bugs, varmits, racidity, staleness, etc. with anything I have stored back there. Last week I opened a package of crackers that were well past the "use by" date (14 months). They were fine. The only thing I have ever opened that had an off taste was a package of Fritos that were 8 months past the "use by" date. Popped them in the oven and heated them up a little. They were fine.
     
  8. Eli-2

    Eli-2 Active Member

    26
    0
    How much DE are you using in the 5 gallon bucket? And do you use different measurements for different foods, i.e., dried beans/peas vs rice/wheat.
    Thanks
    Eli:scratch:scratch
     
  9. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

    3,104
    98
    I just have this huge problem with drying the frozen product..how can you really know you're not sealing a product that has even a little moisture in it??
    3 years later...rot??
    :scratch
     
  10. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

    3,104
    98

    In this house (I wish we could sell) there is an 8 X 8 foot pantry..no windows..not even a A/C vent so it stays cool. I'll miss that room when we move.


    Eli>>>>D.E. ..how much???
    I pour in a layer of product, sprinkle a teaspoon, another layer about half full, sprinkle another tsp, and after filling, another tsp...about 3 tsp total..

    My husband and I take a tablespoon each morning as advised and his knees stopped hurting...he's a 62 year old logger...
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2011
  11. BadgeBunny

    BadgeBunny Well-Known Member

    418
    0
    I'm with you there. When I first started storing food I did the 3 days in the freezer thing. Then I would let it "thaw out" before I sealed it up. But honestly, in my experience anyway, it isn't necessary.

    We are talking about buying an acreage and putting a small cabin on it. The floor plan I am playing with has a pantry that is actually bigger than the living room ... :p

    Sent you a PM about taking DE because I don't want to hijack the thread.
     
  12. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

    6,764
    108
    Here is a thread on DE in case you haven't seen it yet.
     
  13. BadgeBunny

    BadgeBunny Well-Known Member

    418
    0
    :wave: Ohhhhhh ..... thanks!! I hadn't even thought about doing a search here for it. Duh! :rolleyes:
     
  14. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

    3,104
    98
    badgebunny...you can roller skate in that pantry while
    building those shelves!!
    :scratch
     
  15. BadgeBunny

    BadgeBunny Well-Known Member

    418
    0
    :D Not if I stock it right! LOL