Author Topic: Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.  (Read 3671 times)

Offline Johnny MAX!

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Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.
« on: June 17, 2009, 08:08:24 PM »
I apologize if this has been covered here, but the best way to keep food, especially grains for a long time is to remove the food from oxygen. Oxygen actually oxidized the food, which makes it stale at first then go bad. But, if you have the food in a modified atmosphere such as CO2 it will last much longer. The way it works is two fold, one, it keeps the food from oxidizing (going stale) and second, it kills bugs and bacteria that spoil food.

How do you store food in a CO2 modified atmosphere? ???

You can put a piece of dried ice in the bottom of a plastic drum or bucket and then put a lid on it. It will build up pressure, which will force the CO2 into the food you are storing. You will need to burp the air out as pressure builds up.
CO2 is heavier than air and by putting the dried ice at the bottom, the oxygen should rise above the Co2 and exit the container. You can use a plastic bags if you wish. Another source of CO2 is fermentation, which is what I will do. I homebrew beer, make wine, cider and mead, so I have access to plenty of CO2, not to mention I have 3 CO2 cylinders. ;)

Oh, I almost forgot, grain that is stored this way, will last 5 to 7 years.  :o
You can keep, flour, rice, beans, wheat, cornmeal, pasta etc. If food is sealed in plastic bags, you may need to preferate the bags all over. The CO2 will eventually make its way into the package and the oxygey will rise to the top if it is not trapped.

I am trying to devise a way to keep my crisper in my refrigerator flooded with CO2. Can you imagine how long lettuce and other veggies will last. I am also thinking about flooding freezer bags with CO2 (after I put veggies in them) before I pull a vacuum. I bet they will keep fresh a long time. I want to try it with meat also. You know how meat oxidizes and turns white and freezer burns. In theory, it should not freezer burn in a modifies CO2 atmosphere.

If you want to check out what I have posted, just search (CO2 modified atmosphere) there have been many studies. You can use other inert gasses, like argon, but CO2 is the easiest and most affordable.

You can almost store food for two presidential terms! ;D

Offline Pathfinder

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Re: Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2009, 03:58:51 PM »
I have not yet tried this - limited access to CO2 - but the instructions I have say put 1 pound of CO2 on top of the filled 5-6 gal bucket, say filled with wheat stored in a mylar bag with the bag still open. Since CO2 is heavier than air, it will sink and fill the bucket displacing the air with CO2 and thereby eliminating the oxygen. When the CO2 is about the size of a quarter, seal the mylar bag, and lid the bucket (I use gamma lids). Buckets sealed in this way will keep much longer than 5-7 years - some say wheat will last as long as 30 years without losing its nutrients.

As soon as I find a source for CO2, I am trying this.

Offline union hill

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Re: Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2009, 08:21:52 PM »
Nothing magic about CO2 per se... O2 can be removed by displacing air in the container with N2 or CO2, or absorbed chemically with O2 absorbers. Plastic is somewhat gas-permeable, so 5-7 years for grains stored in just a plastic bucket is probably about right, but in mylar or in metal #10 cans and stored at suitable temp they should store much longer. 25 or 30 years maybe.

Offline Herbalpagan

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Re: Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2009, 08:04:44 AM »
In many states, you can't buy dry ice.  I get food grade buckets, line them with a mylar bag and throw in a couple of oxygen absorbers. Then I seal the bag and put the lid on the bucket. Sealed this way, wheat, rice and beans have a 15-20 year storage life. You can also store your rice and beans in meal sized packages that have been vacuum sealed (throw an oxygen absorber in) for the same amount of time. I put my meal sized bags in a 5 gallon bucket iwth lid.

There really is a long, long shelf life for many products if you seal them right, and it can all be done at home using easily obtained materials. Sugar, if kept from moisture and insects can last for ever, wheat can last for 20 years, as can the above mentioned items. I think of buying food as insurance...it costs a bit in time and money, but the price of food will never go down, so no matter what, you are ahead of the game. ;D

Offline Johnny MAX!

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Re: Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2009, 08:11:38 PM »
I take a carboy of beer wort, pitch my yeast, shove a hose in the top, put the other end id a 55 gallon drum of grain and fill it with CO2 then drink the beer!
I also use CO2 from fermenting wine to add CO2 to my aquarium for my aquatic plants. Then I drink the wine "Scolioli, drinkin win!"

Offline Klapton

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Re: Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2009, 09:13:03 PM »
Keep in mind that when wheat is stored this way, it loses the ability to germinate after a year or so.  Just keeping it cool, dry, and critter-free, it will keep for YEARS, and still germinate.  For most other things, oxygen deprivation is good.  But God made wheat it's own perfect storage vessel.

Offline Lowdown3

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Re: Modified Atmosphere - store food 5-7 yrs.
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2009, 06:53:52 AM »
Most folks gave up on dry ice in the mid 90's when oxygen absorbers and mylar liners became more commonly available.

5-7 years is nothing if packed properly. A couple decades should be easily doable with most grains.

Long Term food storage results pt1


Free video showing results of long term storage food.

www.bucketpacking.com

will show you how the professional packing houses pack superpails.

Good luck.
Lowdown3