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Discussion in 'General Food and Foraging Discussion' started by benJAMMIN, Oct 23, 2008.
What would be the best thing to keep rice in for a long period of time?
Storage method would depend on your idea of "long term". Most folks that I know who store food for 1-2 years put their rice (and other grains) into vacuum sealed mylar bags, then into food-grade 5-gal buckets with oxygen absorbers. Me, I just leave in original storage bag and then place into old popcorn tins. Biggest issue is keeping the rice dry and away from critters.
Net's suggestion is exactly what I do.
I buy bulk bags of rice from Sam's and vacuum seal the rice. Then put them in sealed containers. About to buy some moisture packets to soak it up. It should preserve the rice for at least 2-3 years from my best research.
Dean, do you leave your rice in another bag before you seal it? I have always put mine into a cheap ziplock, left a bit of the seal undone(or taken a fork and poked one or 2 holes to let the air out) and then put it into the vac bag to seal. If you get good results, maybe I can skip this step.
Here's how to pack your food for long term storage the way the professional LTS packing food do it-
[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vW7_cTn6YpE]YouTube - Long term food storage part 1[/ame]
What has worked great for me is simple. First, I freeze the rice, flour, cornmeal, etc for ten days to kill any bugs or eggs. Yes, I have found them in all three. Then, I vacuum seal and date. Store in an environment with little temperature fluctuation, if possible.
I recently ( two weeks ago) ate four year, five month old rice and it was as good as newly bought. I believe it will store much longer.
Problem with the vacu-sealer bags is they are not a light barrier and may not be a true oxygen barrier LONG TERM - i.e, 5 or more years. Most thinner plastics like that are designed to biodegrade in a short period of time.
I suspect if you were storing a quantity of food, that doing the vacu seal baggies onesy twosey would get a lot more expensive (in packing costs) than a $1. mylar that would hold upwards of 50 lbs. of rice.
And no it doesn't all go "POOOF" when you open the mylar.
Things like flour and cornmeal WILL see a higher amount of bugs. Bugs seem to love the processed food. I've thrown out so much flour over the last 22 years of storing food, it's a crying shame.
Store wheat instead of flour- it stores better, is cheaper and lasts much longer.
When you say mylar what you mean exactly? Are there special mylar food containers?
What effect does light have on sealed food?
they can be purchased online, i buy mine from majorsurplus.com
Light will break down food compounds best to keep food stored in the dark.
Freeze first, Then bag (Mylar bags that is) 02 absorbers and then the heat seal.
Follow these steps and your Rice should last upwards of 20 to 30 years under optimum storage conditions.
The video that was posted is a great resource, go to you tube and search for PAW Productions they have some great videos.
If you want to save the time and effort you can purchase most of your storage staples in #10 cans
A good resource is
You can also get the supplies through E.E and Wendy maes simpler living, along with Sorbent systems.
I don't know if I store my rice correctly, but I do eat alot of rice (several times a week).
I purchase rice in bulk-bags and transfer just what I need to a sealed glass container that is stored on my counter. The glass container keeps the rice moisture free - or - so I think. It doesn't stay in there very long before the container is re-filled.
The bulk-bag that the rice comes in stays in my basement in my "food-storage-locker" - a room seperated from the main basement with shelves for canned and dried goods. Some of the food is packed into plastic bins with SilicaGel to soak up any extra moisture that might enter when the lid opens to collect foods.
So freezing them is the best or only way to get rid of the bugs and eggs that have been left in the grains? Eww makes me sick just thinking about it.
I would think vacuuming sealing would kill them off as well due to the depletion of oxygen over time.
It would kill them off but wouldn't they still be left in the bag?
so is freezing rice the only way to make sure you don't get the bugs? i'm buying small bags of rice doing rotating stock.
I read on another site that the best way to store for long periods of time is to use the food grade 5 gal buckets and put a half pound of dry ice in the container before sealing. The dry ice depletes the oxygen creating CO2 which will kill all bugs and eggs plus it vacuum seals the container if sealed with a rubber gasket.
Dry ice use is as a fumigant only. You can't use mylar with dry ice, so your bucket will still lack an oxygen barrier.
Dry ice is also a little dangerous to work with and hard to find.
People used dry ice before mylar and absorbers become easy to find. Very few people use dry ice any more.
You can get dry ice at any icehouse/ice supplier (which means being in an urban environment usually), and it's not nearly as dangerous to work with as most liquid refrigerants.
Insects are very hardy creatures, there are documented cases of them (& their eggs) being found in the most extreme environs on Earth: sealed in vats of toxic waste, 100,000' altitudes, extreme cold etc etc... & surviving!
Here is a link to just about everything you need to know about food storage.
Food Storage FAQ
It should help answer most of your questions.
I have been wondering about just vacuum sealing rice, flour, etc. in quart and half gallon glass canning jars. It would be real easy and fairly cheap to make the sealing equipment.