Friday, May 15, 2009
PETE Bottles for Food Storage
Below is a cut and paste from the provident living that explains how to store food in plastic containers. You can get to the post by clicking here then click onto the PETE Bottles Link. If you want to learn about recycling symbols click here and scroll down to where it explains about PETE symbols.
PETE Bottles for Longer-Term Storage
Bottles made of PETE (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic can be used with oxygen absorbers to store products such as wheat, corn, and dry beans. PETE bottles are identified on the container with the letters PETE or PET under the recycle symbol (see above picture).
Other types of plastic bottles typically do not provide an adequate moisture or oxygen barrier for use with oxygen absorbers. Do not use containers that were previously used to store nonfood items.
PETE bottles can also be used for shorter-term storage (up to 5 years) of other shelf-stable dry foods such as white rice. Visit providentliving.org for specific product recommendations.
Moisture content of stored foods should be about 10 percent or less. When moist products are stored in reduced oxygen packaging, botulism poisoning may occur.
Packaging in PETE Bottles
1. Use PETE bottles that have screw-on lids with plastic or rubber lid seals. You can verify that the lid seal will not leak by placing a sealed empty bottle under water and pressing on it. If you see bubbles escape from the bottle, it will leak.
2. Clean used bottles with dish soap, and rinse them thoroughly to remove any residue. Drain out the water, and allow the bottles to dry completely before you use them for packaging food products.
3. Place an oxygen absorber in each bottle. The absorbers can be used with containers of up to one-gallon capacity (4 liters). Additional instruction about using oxygen absorbers is available at providentliving.org. (This is now Kathleen typing - I don't do this step when I am storing food for my 3 month supply. I have found that the oxygen absorbers work in PETE containers only if the lids to the containers have a rubber ring on them at are found on containers such as a gallon water jug.)
4. Fill bottles with wheat, corn, or dry beans.
5. Wipe top sealing edge of each bottle clean with a dry cloth and screw lid on tightly.
6. Store the products in a cool, dry location, away from light.
7. Protect the stored products from rodents.
8. Use a new oxygen absorber each time you refill a bottle for storage.
Where to Get Oxygen Absorber Packets
Oxygen absorber packets are available at home storage centers and Church Distribution Services, or they can be ordered online at ldscatalog.com. Unused oxygen absorbers can be stored in glass jars with metal lids that have gaskets.
This picture is a sample of some of the things I have stored in PETE containers. (Click onto the picture to see a close up of the items stored, AND, yes! chocolate chips are an important item in our 3 month food supply).
After reading this post you will soon learn to recognize #1 PETE recycled containers as compared to a #2 PETE recycled container. (An example of a #2 recycled container is a milk jug.)
This post comes from cut and past off the church web page: providentliving.org. Learning about PETE storage containers has changed the way I do our family's food storage. I use PETE #1 containers to store the food that we use regularly. Using the PETE containers has made it easier for me to rotate the staples we use most. I take a permanent marker and date the container each time I fill it. The items I store in PETE containers would include items such as: Rice, Oats, sugar, flour, cereal, jello, popcorn, cornmeal, powdered sugar, noodles, etc. I use the wide mouth containers for items that as I need to scoop out with a measuring cup, such as flour. I use the small opening containers for items that I can pour out such as white sugar. I order the wide mouth PETE container, on line from www.FreundContainer.com - item #34798. For the small opening containers that I can pour the food out of such as rice, I use recycled l gallon PETE water bottles such as a Crystal Geyser containers.