How does emergency food achieve a 25 year shelf life?
Freeze Drying and Dehydrating Emergency Food
Packaging and Nitrogen Flush
Manufacturers of freeze dried food make sure their meals aren’t exposed to oxygen or light so their freeze dried food maintains its 25 year shelf life. They do this by packing their food in mylar pouches. All plastics allow minute amounts of oxygen to pass through them over time. Mylar is designed with a layer of aluminum, sandwiched between multiple layers of food-grade plastics. This reduces the amount of airflow to virtually nothing. They are also waterproof, and opaque to block out light.
Manufacturers package their freeze dried food with nitrogen. This helps flush out any oxygen that might have been remaining in the package. Nitrogen packed foods have the best shelf lives. Nitrogen is inert and will not react inside the package, while displacing any oxygen that would have adverse effects. To double check packages are free of oxygen, manufacturer’s add oxygen absorbers to their meal pouches before sealing them. Oxygen absorbers use a chemical reaction to pull any remaining oxygen from their environment and trap it.
Manufacturers do everything they can to ensure you get the most from your 25 year emergency food, but how you store the food makes a difference. Ideally, you want to store your emergency foods in a cool, dark place that doesn’t experience many temperature fluctuations. This will allow you to get the long shelf lives you’re looking for.
As well as carrying the premier brands for pre-prepared emergency food storage, Total Prepare also carries mylar bags and oxygen absorbers to help you create your own food storage solutions at home. We can’t guarantee a 25 year shelf life on your emergency food if you package it at home. That being said, many people get some pretty impressive durations from their DIY setups. Dry ingredients can often be stored without a freeze dryer or other expensive equipment. This is a favourite solution for those looking to prepare on a budget. Check out our downloadable PDF guide on how to do your own food storage with these methods at home.
How does 25 year emergency food compare with other options?
Every emergency preparedness solution has its place. You need to rehydrate freeze dried emergency food with plenty of water and a way to boil it. If those things aren’t available, things like self-heating self-contained meals (MREs – or Meals Ready to Eat) are the ideal solution. If budget is a concern, calorie ration bars or DIY options come out on top.
In general, we always recommend freeze dried food for anyone wanting to prepare for more than 3 days. It’s hard to beat the variety, nutrition, and long shelf life, not to mention that freeze dried food has options that are non-GMO, and gluten free solutions for those that need them.
When you invest in food storage through Total Prepare you can rest assured that your supply will be safe, secure and worry-free for a long time. Think of the security and peace of mind that offers. Secure your long-term food storage supply today with Total Prepare and enjoy up to 25 year shelf life worry-free.