Skip to comments.Five Different Shelf Life Studies:Two on Canned Food and Three on Dry Food
Posted on 07/19/2012 10:56:25 PM PDT by Kartographer
fter granting permission, my Entire Food Shelf Life Summary Article was published in the Journal of Civil Defense, Volume 43, Issue Number 2, Year 2010.
The Journal of Civil Defense has an extremely wide distribution and readership including all the Congressmen in the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives.
Publisher's Mailing Address: The American Civil Defense Association, 11576 S. State Street, Suite 502, Draper, UT 84020 Publisher's Web Address: www.tacda.org.
(Excerpt) Read more at grandpappy.info ...
For the link impaired:
Thanks for posting this. I had a 12 year old can of beef stew yesterday that was very tasty.
Just a reminder that the study says “white rice”, not brown rice, which can go rancid unless you keep it refrigerated or in the freezer.
When I began prepping, “use by” and “best by” was not required to be on canned or packaged goods. So, I called the companies. Now, those dates being there makes food storage much easier.
For really long term food storage, I ordered from Walton Food to have food with a 20-25 year life and likely good past that time. That’s hermetically sealed food.
I tried sealing flour myself and you don’t want to know how that looked after a couple of years, so I dumped that and got sealed Walton flour.
I could buy actual sealed wheat from them as I have a Family Grain Mill but since it’s just me here, I haven’t done that. Maybe I should.
You probablly have actual wheat - right?
I’ve found that bulk powdered milk and potato flakes can taste a bit funky after a couple of years in the original packaging. I now prefer smaller serving-sized packaging as opposed to bulk-sized storage.
It’ll taste better after SHTF.
Texas is humid and if a large box of instant milk soaked up some of that humidity the box would turn into a brick, so I buy the boxes that have quart amount packages inside. For my long life milk, I got it hermetically sealed in cans from Walton.
So, I have grocery store food for the short term, and Walton food for the long term.
The closest my wife and I come to d-i-v-o-r-c-e is when she insists on heaving perfectly good canned food into the garbage when it passes that phony balony date on the label.
I had 2 brothers in WWII. Kenneth told about sitting in a foxhole on Okinawa in 1945 eating C-Rations, some kind of chicken recipe; and as he was “dining” he scrutinized the info printed on the can, of which this was a portion: “Omaha,Nebraska 1929.” The stuff was 16 years old, and he said it was o.k. At least as o.k. as C-Rations ever CAN be.
And what I tried to tell the girl cleaning my house.
When she got to the pantry she started tossing stuff based on the date.
I had to sit her down and explain what studies have shown and the dates are arbitray government numbers that really have no meaning or value.
At least for canned or jarred foods.
Then explained what caused food to spoil and what one of the catalysts, oxygen, is and does.
Then explained that canned food is filled to the lid and is exposed to no air.
She actually wanted to toss soy sauce that had expired. LOL
Had to explain what salt does and why it is used as a preservative.
She then asked why there was open bottle of soy sauce, various hot sauces, etc in the fridge if foodstuff that high in salt could be stored for very long times at room temp.
Not my decision, like most things that go on in the house.
She still had her programming and kept trying to toss perfectly good food. So I had to stand side by side with her and then finally asked that she just clean up the shelving and organize everything.
I left to attend to business and when I returned I opened the pantry. Damn! Looked great and she threw everything away.
I started laughing because again, I don’t get to make a whole lot decisions around here.
Besides, I have other caches in the event there is a disaster and if push comes to shove I’ll be eating and explaining why the dates on the cans are irrelevant, while they are sitting hungry.
They’ll eat eventually.
Yes, but I still need to rotate it now.
I have food savers and canning jars but, they are primarily for when the world goes to hell.
I’m lazy, so I ordered powdered milk, eggs, wheat, rice and beans(various) already packaged for 20 years.
It’s not a money thing for me as I don’t intend on opening the packages ever and if I do I hope to be very happy that a younger man thought to save up....just in case.
I keep vanilla to make the milk taste good and saffron to flavor a variety of things.
lemon pepper salt also is one my favorites.
My brother-in-law spent a year in Greenland with the U.S. Army in the late 50s. They were eating “fresh” eggs in cartons that were date-stamped 1945.
I don’t believe any of the date-stamps on food or medicine as long as they are kept cool and dry.
We had some neighbors who were quite elderly (well into their 90’s) when they passed away. There were shelves full of home-canned items in the cellar (peaches, pears, some veggies, etc.) that were preserved at least 20 years earlier.
One of the family friends asked if he could have the food. We were all simply horrified...but he took it, ate it, and reported that it was excellent! Who knew...LOL!
When I was in Marine Corps boot camp we ate C rations from WWII that at the time were 28 years old. They tasted all right to me.
You might look into butylated hydroxytoluene, or BHA, butylated hydroxyanisole, or BHT, tert-butylhydroquinone and propyl gallate as preservatives to prevent spoilage.
I am vacuum sealing 40 lbs of brown rice. Are you saying that it goes bad if it’s not frozen? Wife and I eat mostly brown rice for dietary reasons.
the only thing to watch out for with canned goods is if there is a top or bottom that is not flat...its had bacteria invade it somehow.....years back when I worked as cashier in grocery store we watched for those slightly bubbled out bottoms or tops....sometimes the stock boys would find them when putting up stock...don’t eat unless you want to die...Same goes for home canned food products. The rubber lid just needs a micro air space to cause botulism...
I look for two things before I eat canned foods that have been on the shelf forever:
2. No fresh shwoosh sound when I open.
The fresh shwoosh sound is new to me, thanks....GG
You probablly have actual wheat - right?
Wheat for long term storage, and a grinder of course.
Packaged flour for normal use prior to having to break in to your long term storage. That’s what we do. Imbedded weevils can always pose a problem for flour. Someone on a question and answer blog says she freezes her flour for a few days and then takes it out and hasn’t had a problem since.
My wife is of the firm belief that the day (or hour/minute/second) after the use-by-day date, food becomes poisonous and you will die a slow, painful, choking death if you ingest the food. By contrast, I eat bread that has passed the ubd by months. Of course, I store it in the refrigerator, and it still tastes good. But I can’t convince my wife that eating food after the ubd won’t necessarily kill you.
I was rotating some canned green beans a couple of days ago, and noticed the top and bottom of one can seemed to bulge a bit. When I opened the can, it hissed and bubbled like crazy, so I dumped the contents down the garbage disposal. When I examined the bottom of the can closely I found a teeny-tiny little rust spot, must of been what caused the problem.
“Brown and White Rices
Brown and white rices store very differently. Brown rice is only expected to store for 6 months under average conditions. This is because of the essential fatty acids in brown rice. These oils quickly go rancid as they oxidize. It will store much longer if refrigerated. White rice has the outer shell removed along with those fats. Because of this, white rice isn’t nearly as good for you, but will store longer. Hermetically sealed in the absence of oxygen, plan on a storage life for white rice of 8-10 years at a stable temperature of 70 degrees F. It should keep proportionately longer if stored at cooler temperatures. Stored in the absence of oxygen, brown rice will last longer than if it was stored in air. Plan on 1 to 2 years. It is very important to store brown rice as cool as possible, for if you can get the temperature down another ten degrees, it will double the storage life again.”
That’s exactly the wrong sound to hear as well seeing the bubbling, unless is had been a can of Coke that was dropped.
You did the right thing. That food would have made you very sick and in danger of dying.
I fancy the Goya Adobo seasonings. They are mostly salt and kept dry in vacuum will keep forever. Quite tasty for just about anything.
I remember back in the 70s when I was stationed in Germany. My job required 50% TDY for 4 or 6 weeks at a time to some pretty remote mountaintops and locations all the way from Iceland, through England, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Greece and Turkey.
Pretty poor back then. We’d buy surplus rations and eat them for lunch so we could collect the per diem cash and actually make some extra dough. I remember buying a few boxes of K rations (WWII and Korea), and then some C rations. Didn’t die. I liked the potted meat and crackers. Oh, each pack came with matches and a pack of 4-cigarettes....
There's a trait I noticed that's common with a lot of women, to a much higher degree than with men: when a man tells her to do something, even though he's her employer, if she doesn't personally agree that it's a good idea she won't do it.
Botom line, at my age my canned and dry foods have a longer shelf life than I do.
16 year old C-rations must be SOP. I was eating 1952 C’s in 1968 while stationed in Germany.
I’ve had a 20 pound bag o’ brown rice in the proverbial cool, dry place for about 5 years, now. Doin’ fine. Bought it for this specific reason. Down to about 6 pounds...should replenish.
Now in the canisters, you can seal jelly jars, spaghetti sauce jars or most any glass jars. Just put one in the canister and seal it up. I have been drying vegetables and fruits and I am sealing them in jars.
“I had to sit her down and explain what studies have shown and the dates are arbitray government numbers that really have no meaning or value.”
Most of the ‘Use By’ dates are not even dictated by the government...they are arbitrarily decided by the manufacturers.
Vitamins and other supplements...the FDA has not established any parameters for ‘expiration dates’, and they are not required on these things. At least one large supplier of supplements does not put an expiration date on theirs...they do put a ‘Date Manufactured’ on, and this helps keep stock rotated, but in no way indicates that stuff ‘goes bad’.
I still have one of the small folding C-ration can openers that came with the package...don’t know the vintage on what we were eating, but I acquired the opener in 1959. For a long time I had it on my key ring, until I figured out that must be what was wearing holes in my pocket :)
That be a P-38.
For a long time after I got out of the Army and worked in a machine shop I had one of those can openers. I had a Kennedy machinist’s toolbox with all the drawers in it, and had a C-Ration can opener in the top small drawer. I’m sure it’s out in the garage somewhere. ;o)
If you look on the site and find the canisters you can use these to vacuum seal other glass jars like spaghetti sauce and jelly jars. I use these to seal food that I have dehydrated.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.