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How Long Can I Freeze Food?

Part of making jerky – or working with any food for that matter – is selective shopping, safe handling and correct storage. We all know shopping for jerky meat requires the meat be lean. However shopping for other food items also requires some thought and planning.

Shopping for food:
  • Save shopping for frozen or refrigerated items for last after choosing your other non-cold items
  • Never buy meat, poultry, or fish in packaging that is bloated, torn or leaking.
  • Don’t buy any food past its USE BY, SELL BY or expiration date.
Handling food:
  • Handle foods with clean hands; work on clean surfaces
  • Don’t cross-contaminate products ( i.e., don’t handle vegetables after handling raw chicken without washing your hands first)
  • Cook to proper temperatures
  • Chill – Refrigerate (or freeze) promptly
Food Storage:

Most foods can be stored in the freezer to enjoy later. There are some foods that are not recommended be frozen. These are:

Fresh and hard boiled eggs; deli-style salads like chicken, ham, tuna, macaroni; unopened canned ham; and dressing pre-stuffed, uncooked pork or lamb chops, or chicken breasts.

For items that can be frozen (based on a freezer at 0 degrees F), you’ll find the chart below gives you the suggested safe freezer time to maintain optimum quality.(1)



This chart is a condensed version of one recommended by the US Government.





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