One less bucket of pasta : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I bought food grade plastic bucket with screw top at Big Lots. I opened my grocery store pasta and filled. Guess what? I have a large family of black bugs. I did this in late August. Beware and take care. My method is flawed. Let the professionals do this job.

-- Bugged (, October 12, 1998


The larva for those lovely bugs were probably in the packages as they came from the store. I've had real good luck with freezing food stuffs...the dry kind for a couple days before storing...kills those eggs. I understand CO2 will do likewise...bayleaf will prevent new ones from sneaking in, if they find a way, which doesn't sound like your problem.

-- Donna Barthuley (, October 12, 1998.

uh... yuck!

You mean they're already in there?


-- Michael Taylor (, October 12, 1998.

Yep,...most pasta packaging, especially if in boxes is not airtight. Flour and rice routinely have bug larvae in the packaging, worse in some places in the world than others. I love it when I put new package of rice in container I use regularly and one week later I open the cannister and lovely tiny moths fly out...

Freeze your dry foods my friends, then store.

-- Donna Barthuley (, October 12, 1998.

Don't worry Mike, those black bugs don't eat much. :) I have had pasta stored for over a year in my dry basement. Don't open the pasta you get from the store. Store it in air tight containers in it's original packaging. I also have a feeling the originator of this thread is from one of those food storage companies trying to drum up some business.

-- Dave (, October 12, 1998.

Actually, I guess those little black bugs could be a little extra protien : )

I figure if our forefathers and foremothers : ) could live though a much more diffcult life where bugs were much more pervasive and difficult to be rid of, my family and I can too!!!

You will not hear me complain, especially if the alternative is to go hungry!!!

I'll save a bowl of rice for you, with some nice crunchy treats too!


-- Michael Taylor (, October 12, 1998.

Throw a chunk of dry ice in before you seal your bucket. Put the lid on top, but don't seal it untill the "smoke" stop coming out the edge of the lid (about 2 hours). Tighten the lid. No oxygen, no bugs. The pre-freezing sounds like a good idea, too.

-- Bill (, October 13, 1998.

One more debugging alternative to freezing/dry ice etc. (good methods, BTW) is diatomaceous earth. About one cupful per bucket of staples like grain or pasta or beans, mixed in with the foodstuff. Be sure you get food grade DE and not the swimming pool filter stuff which has much too much silica in it. Run "diatomaceous earth" on your favorite search engine, or check at your feed store/ organic gardening shop for supplies as an alternative. It won't kill eggs but will put a stop to suceeding generations of critters being hatched.

DE has been used in grain storage as an insect killer for decades. It IS NOT a poison- it is a contact killer. It is made up from the fossilized shells of tiny prehistoric sea critters (diatoms) and if anything will provide a calcium supplement for you. It kills insects because its tiny sharp fragments pierce their bodies- the person who introduced me to it several years ago compared it to a person being rolled around in broken glass. It works- I've used it regularly for years.

See James T. Steven's MAKING THE BEST OF BASICS for all sorts of good storage info...


-- nemo (, October 13, 1998.

Right on Bill. The dry ice method works well. I have wondered just why getting a bottle of nitrogen at a welding supply store and gassing the container from the bottom up (cover the air hose with the food, and then pull out slowly with the gas turned on - seal at once) would not work just as well as what the pre packers do. Some folks would complain about possible asbestos contamination, but that is mostly in the hoses you use, not the gas in the bottle. Any asbestos in the bottle should settle to the bottom and stay there. Besides, you could put a filter on the hose pretty easily - small inline air filters are cheap and plentiful. Most of the folks who complain about the cost of welding gasses are not talking about the cost of the gas itself, by the way, but are griping about the rental cost of the bottles and regulators. Also, liquid nitrogen is available, but requires even more careful handling than dry ice. BTW, has anyone used the canning gismos you see every now and again? I'm talking about the ones with real metal cans. I have seen one or two of them, but never used one.

-- Paul Davis (, October 14, 1998.


Funny thing to consider it seems. The threat from asbestoes is almost entirely from airborne particles (they are like vey tiny straight wires, suspended in the air by the air molecules suspending by Brownian motion.) If breathed into the lungs, asbestos (as I understand it0 causes damage (inccreased future cancers, other illnesses made worse) by the "cutting" of the lung tissue by the "shapr wire ends".

So, how would asbestos get inside the high pressure N2 bottles from a supply store? From in the hoses? From the gasses themselves? from past use on a project? Doesn't seem likely, given the pressure diffeerntial and filters in the air inlets of the compressor/N2 refrigerator.

If there wereaAsbestos fibers in the food, who cares, wouldn't they be eaten, not breathed, and so would past through like any other fiber?

CAUTION-CAUTION-CAUTION Extreme embarrassment danger.

Regulate that discharged N2/CO2 VERY VERY carefully, else the food would "blow up" out of the can, into your face, and your fellow spouse parental unit (and all kids in the neighborhood) would be laughing at you trying to pick up 100 lbs of wheat, seeds or flour from the "entire" basement. Peas, not too bad, but they roll everywhere.

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (, October 14, 1998.

Nemo, I have also used diatomaceous earth. It works like a charm and no poison to deal with.

-- Dave (, October 14, 1998.

I like the idea of freezing the container. I have tried it with my rice bucket. Why not just leave it there until I need it? If the lights go out, I could thaw and use. I am not drumming up business. My order is in at Walton. Just putting my chickens in another basket. By the way, how did you know my name?

-- Bugged (, October 14, 1998.

When I checked out getting nitrogen gas for preserving, the guy told me it would cost about $300 to get set up. In addition to buying the canister, the gas, need to buy some kind of hardware = valve. Dry ice at Baskin Robbins cost $1.50/lb. I haven't done either, just put the rice and beans in the poly buckets. I may have a problem with bugs down the road but don't think it will happen for some time. I have found that storage works better than most experts say. I have had beans on the shelf in original bags from the store for years with no bugs. Might not work down South. A different product, but I keep buttermilk in the fridge for several weeks at a time, same with butter and eggs.

-- Rod Beary (, October 19, 1998.

It seems nitrogen is expensive along with a need to put up a couple of hundred dollars towards tank deposit money. Also, the only size nitrogen tank available is a 5 footer and is extreme overkill. If you don't have others to help use it up, it's wasted.

Then we read that nitrogen will kill the wheat. No oxygen, no life; even for wheat. At this stage of the game, I have a problem with killing anything that might be needed to grow more.

Dry ice would produce the same results and I don't like that stuff for other reasons. You might use these methods on grain that you dedecated for food and treat seed grain differently but just be sure that those smaller amount doesn't get eaten, stolen, wet or whatever.

I remember as a kid, my job was to sift the flower before use. Can't remember that mom actually threw any out but I do remember the wiggleys I separated out. Freezing for a few days to kill internal larva sounds like the thing to do. But, does this also kill the grains ability to germinate? Wouldn't expect so, but just thought I'd ask.

Perhaps along with insuring the right humidity, diatimateous earth is the best answer? Leave dry food in the original store containers or loose from bulk supplies, dry out the air, mix the D-E throughout, add packets of silica jel and seal.

By any chance, is too dry not good either? What is good way to determine the humidity and/or how much to dehydrate before closing the container? We looked at some dehydrators in Walmart. Three types; all four trays and about 18 inch diameter. Prices were $17.00 $19.00 and $39.00. The expensive one was opaque with a 300 watt blower built into the bottom. The others were clear plastic and had a 350 watt blower attached to the top cover. What is the practical benefit, if any, of the more expensive one?

Now a couple of non food items.

Check for the Porta-Potti. If you don't buy one, at least stock up on the chemicals from RV supply stores. No matter where you put it, breaking it down and making it smell a little nicer is definately the way to go.

In addition, because of the possible dramatic change in diet, one should think of possible reactions. Stock up on fleet enemas. No telling how a lot of good food will react on you.

And think about this one. Pregnancies may not be such a happy occasion during the big turnover. Best that people be very careful during the appropriate upcoming months.


-- Floyd Baker (, October 19, 1998.

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