ways to prevent freezer burns

Ways to Prevent Freezer Burns

Freezer burns are a very common problem when edibles are stored in a freezer for a long period of time. Simple tips can be followed to avoid this problem and keep food items fresh and full of nutrients.

Buying food items in bulk is a great way of saving money. Many people prefer to buy in bulk to keep their favorite food items available 24x7. However, bulk food requires special storage arrangements. Most foods require freezing to retain their goodness. Foods stored in a freezer for a long time, are many times seen to develop pale, grayish spots which impart a dull appearance to the food. The food item does not appear fresh and is often thrown away. These grayish spots are termed as "freezer burns", which not only alter the visual appeal of the food item, but also spoil its natural taste. These either cover the entire surface area of the food or appear at some spots. If the burn has affected a small area, it can be simply cut off, but when it has covered a major chunk, the entire item has to be thrown away. That means, you buy in bulk to save money but end up having losses. So, how can you prevent freezer burns using simple and easy ways? Given below are a few tips to make your job easy. Tips to Prevent Freezer Burns
  • The main reason behind such burns is air, and to avoid it, it is important to reduce the air content around the food. This can be done by packing food items tightly so that air does not enter the pack. Also, the air present in the pack must be removed to decrease the risk of these burns.
  • Having a vacuum sealer at home can definitely help in eliminating the chances of freezer burns as it is capable of completely sucking out air from the storage pack, which can be sealed and stored. Food items packed by this method keep the food intact for around three years, which is really a long time.
  • Organizing the items stored can help in burn prevention. Food must be stored in such a way that the top part of the freezer and its sides are empty. This space allows air to circulate properly within the freezer and render uniform cooling. Irregular cooling leaves some areas at a higher temperature than others causing thawing and refreezing, ultimately leaving burns on stored food.
  • Storing food in air-tight containers and plastic containers with zip locks can solve this problem. Aluminum foil can also be used to seal the entry of air though, it is not so effective for long-term storage. If an item has to be stored for a short time span, aluminum foil can be a good sealer.
  • Keeping food in large portions can speed up the process for burn formation. This is because frequent removal of small portions from the large pack results in thawing and refreezing which has to be avoided. It is therefore better to store food in required portions so that the entire content is not disturbed.
  • It is quite obvious that some foods are stored near the freezer vent and some distant from it. It is better to consume foods near the vent first and then the ones stored at a distance because they are at higher risk of developing burns due to close proximity to the cooling vent.
  • Food savers can be used to completely suck out air from the food packages and save food from developing burns. They must be used specially, if a lot of food has to be stored in the freezer.
  • Double wrapping food is also a good way to store food in cold storage.
  • Overstocking food can lead to improper air circulation thereby, increasing the chances of freezer burns.
  • Food stored in a refrigerator's freezer is more prone to burns due to frequent opening and closing of the fridge door, as it hampers the refrigerator's ability of maintaining stable temperature within the freezer.
  • It is good to consume food items within 3-6 months. Anything stored beyond this time frame is likely to have this problem.
  • Storing food when warm is also a reason behind this problem, therefore, food must be kept in cold storage only after it acquires the room temperature.
  • Writing the date of storage on food packages can help in identifying the older ones which can be consumed earlier to protect them from spoilage.
  • Saving meats from burns can be achieved by storing them in special freezer containers, and fruits can be saved by the addition of citric acid, which prevents oxidation and freeze burning.
  • The freezer temperature must be set as low as possible to maintain a good storage condition.
Freezer burns are mainly caused due to dehydration and oxidation. Water is known to evaporate at all temperatures, and it sublimes from ice to water vapor at freezing temperatures. This loss of water renders the food unfit for consumption. Using these simple tips for storing food can help in preventing food burns to a large extent. A little effort can avoid food spoilage and save a lot of money from being wasted.

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