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Question Storing in Plastic Containers


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Okay it's me again. I've been checking prices different places for mylar bags and oxygen absorbers. Right now I just can't afford to buy both, but need to start getting some of these things out of my freezer. So since I have abundance of soda bottles (small & 2 liter), garorade, juice containers does everyone think it would be okay to let them all thaw and start filling these bottles with my rice, beans, etc. and store in a dark place? Maybe I could order the oxygen absorbers, but don't know what cc and how many a bottle would need. I just can't afford everything right now, so thought this might be an option. At least I could sort of clear my freezer out and get some things sorted.

 

So anyone think this would be okay??

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I wouldn't put an 02 Absorber in a plastic bottle, I don't think :huh: . The lid itself may not seal tight enough allowing the air to pass through. With the addition of the 02 absorber, if air is leaking in through the cap then the 02 absorber would just be wasted anyway. If the lid did seal tight enough the plastic may collapse on itself with the addition of an 02 absorber and the bottle may get hairline cracks in it, thus causing air to get in that way but I'm guessing here.

 

I think I would save the 02 abosorbers and maybe re-use some glass jars like pickle or spaghetti jars if you have any handy. Then, use the plastic bottles As-Is but store them in a dark place (under the bed, in a closet or in a box??) Maybe put some Saran Wrap around the lid to keep out as much air as possible. It should only take a tiny little piece.

 

When I'm sealing things and using 02 Absorbers I always get things laid out in advance and only what I can seal in about 10 minutes time. I cut the 02 bag open, pop an absorber in to what ever I am storing and quickly Vac Seal the 02 bag closed again THEN the food I've just packaged. Sometimes it takes several passes doing this but I've been able to save my absorbers this way as they can "go" so quickly.

 

Hope that helped some.

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You can also consider spray painting the outside of the clear plastic bottles. For darkness.

 

 

So.....those of us who store...... which is the most to least important factors.

 

 

 

Dry ** Dark ** Low Temperature ** No Oxygen

 

 

Depends on the product but I'd place DRY as #1 and Low Temperature [except sugar & salt] as #2. Dark is easy to achieve. Even if you can't get "No Oxygen", begin to store anyway.

 

MtRider [my 2 cents]

Edited by Mt_Rider
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Okay so I just put the beans, rice, peas in the plastic containers, with no oxygen absorbers, and tighten the lid down and tight as I can. Is that right? I plan on storing them in a dark blue rubber maid container in a side shelf in a closet that is cool and very dark. Does this sound okay? BTW, how long will they keep like this? Sorry for all the questions everyone. Thanks for all your help.

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Okay so I just put the beans, rice, peas in the plastic containers, with no oxygen absorbers, and tighten the lid down and tight as I can. Is that right? I plan on storing them in a dark blue rubber maid container in a side shelf in a closet that is cool and very dark. Does this sound okay? BTW, how long will they keep like this? Sorry for all the questions everyone. Thanks for all your help.

 

 

Katz,

Unless you use O2 absorbers in the rice, the rice will become rancid. I don't know exactly how long that would take, but it will happen.

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It takes a lot longer than brown rice, but I have had rancid white rice that we could not eat. It smelled awful. Just my experience with it, so I use an O2 absorber now in my white rice, too. Not just brown. Same with oatmeal. Yick !

Maybe someone else will have had the same experience, I don't know. I just can't risk losing all my Jasmine rice.

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First of all, try your local freecycle or craigslist - I bought some buckets with lids for $0.50 each. Then buy the mylar (which I reuse several times.) and O2 absorbers. Just make sure the lids are tight fitting lids. Total cost of a bucket with O2 and mylar should be under $3, especially if you have a cannery near you.

 

Or, as was suggested, store in glass... either with the O2 absorbers or with the vacuum sealer. You can often get mason jars free or very cheap on craigslist and freecycle. I got hundreds of them (just make sure you are getting the screw top lids) The only problem with storing in glass is that it's breakable and as such, not as easily stacked as buckets. There are tons of ways to save money or even do this almost free.

 

Just remember as said below, light, air, heat, etc. As long as you are keeping those out, it won't matter if you are storing them in a stapler, as long as it's air tight and dark/cool. Being creative can be great and money saving, but it's not going to save you any money at all if you go and open a bottle and find the air flow wasn't blocked and your food is rancid.

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???? Rancid WHITE rice?????? Thot that was sort of like styrofoam going rancid. I've had buckets of both white and brown for years with no trouble. And I'm one of the odd ones who has yet to even get my hands on mylar and 02 absorbers. Just real nice COOL/COLD and dark storage area. :shrug:

 

But don't just use my example. If we are making sacrifices to invest in longer term storage....AND counting on it to be there when we neeeeed it, take all the precautions you can. Don't use glass if you might have earthquake. Work hard for coolness if you live in the warmer zones.

 

***MAKE SURE you do freeze or use 02 absorbers/dry ice to get any buggie critters out of ALL grain products before you store them. Then MAKE SURE the products cannot be re-infected...lids with rubber gaskets. [trust me, they often can be 'infected' before you bring them home. A couple eggs here and there will multiply.....just freeze them in their tracks] I take 25-50# bags and leave them inside my car in the winter. Especially COLD subzero nites. I keep them out there, bring them in, and might put them out one more time. That's something I'm fanatic about because I *haven't* used the 02 absorbers to suck the life outta the potential critters. :) I forgot this one time and ....yucko, had a problem that was beginning to spread when I found it. Only small loss, fortunately but I won't forget again. Besides whole grains, this includes pancake mix, bisquick, oatmeal, brownie mix....I make sure of anything that might sit for a while. [Yes, I've been known to stock up on brownie mix...lol ]

 

One problem I did encounter with plastic was the sealer bags. I was given rice in sealer bags....and it was really old when I got it. It got shoved onto a counter in the kitchen rather than usual storage in cool area. A couple years later, I pulled it out and the bag was...kinda 'melting'. It was sticky and gooey and stuck to the rice and.... :yuk: I have no idea what brand or anything. Don't know the life-expectancy of the sealer bags. :shrug:

 

MtRider [tis the season for grain purchases....freezes every nite at my house ]

Edited by Mt_Rider
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I get my white rice out of the packages, they can make the rice taste 'plastic-y' after a while. Supposed to last 7 - 10 years, longer if oxy- absorbers are used and/or stored at lower temps.

My grains in #10 cans are rated to last 20 - 30 years. Lift them up off the cement floor so the air can get around them.

Edited by Mt_Rider
request to fix "lower temps" by Leah
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Lift them up off the cement floor so the air can get around them.

 

Oh yeah, Leah. That's very important to keep telling those new to storage. Never store any container directly on the cement floor. The transfer of temperatures will cause condensation to occur and you'll get mold. Just set on a wood block if nothing else. I'd say watch setting against the walls of cement basement too. I stick sheets of styrofoam behind my stacks of buckets.

 

MtRider

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Okay well today I bit the bullet and ordered some mylar bags and oxy. absorbers. I didn't want to take any chances. I just got the gallon size, so I can store small amts. for me and my dad. So I will let them thaw out to room temperature and then sack in the bags, seal, and put in some container. Don't have buckets yet. But they will be kept inside the house and kept cool. Shoot I have so many hot flashes it's hard for anything to get hot in my house...my cats just sit around shivering!!LOL!!

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???? Rancid WHITE rice?????? Thot that was sort of like styrofoam going rancid. I've had buckets of both white and brown for years with no trouble. And I'm one of the odd ones who has yet to even get my hands on mylar and 02 absorbers. Just real nice COOL/COLD and dark storage area. :shrug:

 

But don't just use my example. If we are making sacrifices to invest in longer term storage....AND counting on it to be there when we neeeeed it, take all the precautions you can. Don't use glass if you might have earthquake. Work hard for coolness if you live in the warmer zones.

 

***MAKE SURE you do freeze or use 02 absorbers/dry ice to get any buggie critters out of ALL grain products before you store them. Then MAKE SURE the products cannot be re-infected...lids with rubber gaskets. [trust me, they often can be 'infected' before you bring them home. A couple eggs here and there will multiply.....just freeze them in their tracks] I take 25-50# bags and leave them inside my car in the winter. Especially COLD subzero nites. I keep them out there, bring them in, and might put them out one more time. That's something I'm fanatic about because I *haven't* used the 02 absorbers to suck the life outta the potential critters. :) I forgot this one time and ....yucko, had a problem that was beginning to spread when I found it. Only small loss, fortunately but I won't forget again. Besides whole grains, this includes pancake mix, bisquick, oatmeal, brownie mix....I make sure of anything that might sit for a while. [Yes, I've been known to stock up on brownie mix...lol ]

 

One problem I did encounter with plastic was the sealer bags. I was given rice in sealer bags....and it was really old when I got it. It got shoved onto a counter in the kitchen rather than usual storage in cool area. A couple years later, I pulled it out and the bag was...kinda 'melting'. It was sticky and gooey and stuck to the rice and.... :yuk: I have no idea what brand or anything. Don't know the life-expectancy of the sealer bags. :shrug:

 

MtRider [tis the season for grain purchases....freezes every nite at my house ]

 

So MtRider - you freeze oatmeal, pancake & Biscuit mix, brownie mixes too? So when you thaw, do you store them in mylar bags and if so do you seal whole box or take out and put all together in bags? Just wondering because I plan on storing these too...plus the brownie mixes...you know stress..gotta have that chocolate!!

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Other than the oatmeal {I buy in bulk}, I don't store enough of the other boxes items to worry about bugs reinvesting here high in the mountains. Just the freeze and then treat it normally.

 

If I was still living on tropical Maui, I would try to freeze and double seal everything. I'd likely take things out of the original boxes but leave in the wax paper/plastic packaging to seal it. NOTE: this is perhaps redundant when the plastic, at least, *should* already be airtight. :shrug: But a bug infestation is costly and really hard to get stopped sometime. Mother told us of her miller moth problem earlier this year, I think. I'd rather go with preventing. Depends on your area as to how far you want to take the daily use thing and how far you'd take the setting-in-storage-for-months things.

 

Also NOTE: If you are discarding the boxes, cut out the instructions and tape to the product....Or at least be sure to label all your mylar bags. Clear sealer bags are easier to identify what you have in there.

 

MtRider [..taking some chances; not taking others.....]

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Shoot, that was supposed to say LOWER temperatures, not longer.

Edit me, please? PrettyPlease.gif

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I don't know what the reasoning is for others, but I freeze any rice or grain item for about 72 hours -OR- I vacuum-seal in FoodSaver Bags, the purpose of which is to kill any larvae that may exist in the product. Storing in mylar or FoodSaver bags also then protects invasion of bugs from external sources.

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This is basic...for those beginners joining us: There are a lot of various ways but yes, the two main purposes regarding bug trouble are to kill what might be and block what might come in later.

 

For #1: Freezing kills. So does suffacation by vacuum sealing or creating vacuum with the O2 absorbers and sealing container airtight. The mylar bags inside the buckets are easier/safer than trying to vacuum seal a 5 gal bucket itself. [picture the bucket sucking IN too far cuz you put in too many O2 absorbers... :o ]

 

For #2 (re-infestation): Anything sealed air-tight will do that. Gasket buckets. Mylar bags. Sealer bags. Glass jars with rubber-type sealing.

 

But you should note that some of those in # 2 will not protect against say...rodent damage, or may be too fragile for moving [throwing into an evacuating vehicle], or too risky for tearing and letting in moisture. Therefore the fragile mylar inside the sturdy bucket.

 

 

Some have had really aggressive rodents and warn about damage to buckets even. I've constantly got rodent difficulties in my garage storage but until just yesterday, I never had chewing plastic to get to anything. Durn varmints chewed a hole [like a bubble gum dispenser] at the bottom of a plastic trash can holding my horse food....the expensive stuff. :mad: That plastic is far thinner than buckets but.... :shrug: I'm just saying...

 

 

MtRider [ off to fight the rodent war.... :motz_6: ]

Edited by Mt_Rider
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  • 1 year later...

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