Yesterday I attended a master food preserver update. We always come away with new information!!
I thought I would share some of what we talked about.
Have you ever had dry products on the shelf go bad? Years ago I went to make oatmeal pulled the bag out and it was 'alive'. I know that is GROSS but true. There had been an insect hatch. It took all I had not to vomit on the kitchen floor as I took the whole lot to the dumpster outside. I also had the same happen with brown rice. Container and all went straight to the dumpster!!!
Since then I have started using the freezer as a protection against that. I don't keep the items in the freezer forever but leaving the product in for a time period.
Yesterday we learned that the time period in the freezer is 4 days. (I normally do a full week, but it's great to know that 4 days is enough.)
We also learned that the oven can be your friend in preventing a bug problem in your dry items too.
Heat the product (oatmeal, rice, wheat, barley, etc whatever dry product you are storing). 1.5 hours at 200 degrees. You can spread the product out on a baking sheet or you can put it in your storage jars and place them in the oven. You want the commodity to reach a core temperature of 150 degrees for 30 minutes. This will kill any insect eggs present. (Actually this will kill any life stages (egg, larvae, pupae & adult) but if actual bugs are present my recommendation is to toss the lot.)