Oxygen (O2) Packets As Simplest Storage Mechanism?

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We're completing our study of food-storage, but have just one question that we can't find the answer to. Maybe one of you will be able to share the answer.

We believe "simplest is best (usually)". So we're looking for the simplest way for us to preserve our bulk grains, dried vegetables etc. Researched the CO2 dry-ice methods, Nitrogen packing etc. But all this stuff is messy and can lead to error. For instance, dry ice can introduce moisture into the grain.

So here is the question: are oxygen absorption packages ALL you need to store grain? If you put O2 packets into well-sealed containers containing low-moisture food, sufficient to suck up all the O2, then put the containers into the proverbial cool and dark place, shouldn't that do the trick? No messing with dry ice or nitrogen packing?

Of course, we know the O2 packets will suck up the oxygen, thus making the pressure inside the container less than outside the container. However, if the container is of good quality, the seal should hold. Without oxygen, and without much moisture, the grain should keep forever. No need to screw around with anything more complicated.

That's the theory. Anyone care to comment?

-- octopus (octopus@devonian.com), December 26, 1998


Octopus, I came to the same conclusion, and that's how I'm storing grain. For everything you didn't know you wanted to know about food storage, go to http://www.waltonfeed.com/ and go to heading: Dry Pack Your Own Foods For Long Term Storage.

-- gilda jessie (jess@listbot.com), December 27, 1998.

Recently I looked into storing grains long-term. I became aware that food-grade plastic buckets would allow oxygen and moisture to penetrate over a period of time, setting up conditions for rot. There are scientifically--e-rived figures you can obtain from these plastic companies for actual amounts of air and water penetration over time. I got figures from mylar bag companies which show a miniscule amount of exchange over time. Even though it will cost us more, we will be storing our home-packaged products in mylar bags with oxygen-absorbers inside plastic buckets, just like the big companies do. Sorry to burst bubbles, but with so much at stake, we can't afford to open up wheat for rabbits or us in several years and find sour-mash.

-- nursey (leckels@msn.com), December 27, 1998.


I agree with you. I have eaten wheat stored over five years with NOTHING done except to put it in the bucket. It was fine. Keeping the O2 out for about nine months kills the eggs and no bugs. If the seal breaks, the atmosphere that comes in is only 21% oxygen, so you have a net apprx. 4% total O2 content. It is fast and easy and will work.

Nursey, the dry ice folks and the N packers don't all seal in mylar first. Regards,


-- Will Huett (illhuett@usa.net), December 27, 1998.

Anyone know where to get oxygen absorber packets?

-- Libby Alexander (libbyalex@aol.com), December 28, 1998.


Try here. Great prices and service.



-- WAAHOO (bobb@mtjeff.com), December 28, 1998.

Thanks for the link. Just ordered a catalog from them. Great prices! Also have storage containers.

-- Libby Alexander (libbyalex@aol.com), December 28, 1998.

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