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Thread: Cheese storage

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    12

    Default Cheese storage

    Hello all,

    I've been lurking, replying, and learning a lot from this site, but this is my first "real" post. I have been trying to gain reliable information on the storage of cheese and reached out to my local college extension. I'll just paste the highlights and if the moderators allow it, I'll post the links the university sent me next time:

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Message: Hello,

    I would like to know if there are any long term storage methods for hard cheese. IE: Can you buy store bought cheddar and wax it? I cold smoke store bought cheese and vacuum seal it and have kept it in the fridge for some time. Are there any studies on this subject?

    Thank you,
    (my name)
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (And here is the reply):
    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    Hello Mr. (my name)

    Thank you for contacting the Home & Garden Information Center regarding cheese storage. The safest option for the long term storage of cheese is freezing. For more details see: HGIC 3506, Handling of Cheese for Safety & Quality(link to .pdf here)

    Waxing and storing store bought cheese is not recommended. While waxing cheese may be used to minimize mold growth on the surface, it cannot prevent growth or survival of many illness-causing bacteria and may introduce an oxygen free environment that can be very dangerous. More detailslink to article here)

    Cold smoking is not likely offering any benefit to safety and storage time. And vacuum packing, like wax sealing, creates a reduced oxygen environment that can contribute to the development of very dangerous pathogens.

    The Clostridium botulinum bacterium is an example of a foodborne pathogen that has the potential to be very dangerous in an oxygen-free environment. The bacteria and their spores can be present in foods without causing any harm, but when introduced into the perfect environment, the spores can change into the vegetative cells that produce the deadly botulinum toxin. The ideal conditions for toxin production include: low oxygen, moisture, low-acid and temperatures between 40 F and 120 F. In short, when you combine moist, low-acid food (cheese, for example) in a package that has no oxygen, and hold it at room temperature, you have provided the perfect setting for trouble.

    So, if you choose to wax and store OR cold smoke and vacuum pack please keep the following in mind:

    Reduced oxygen packaging in combination with refrigeration can improve product life. However, low acid foods that are packaged in reduced oxygen packaging require impeccable attention to cold storage. They must be stored below 40F AT ALL TIMES. For more details see: Vacuum packed Foods: Can they be stored forever? (Links here)

    Handling food in a home kitchen allows for the opportunity to introduce harmful pathogens. If you are handling food and packaging then you must be extra vigilant about maintaining a pristine environment.


    Hope this all helps and if I can assist you further please don't hesitate to contact me directly.
    (high forehead at big university)

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    OK, for what it's worth I have a bunch of cold smoked cheese vacuum sealed in my fridge that I snack on quite often. 4 months old so far and I have had no ill effects. Doesn't mean what someone else makes won't harm them. I'm just putting this information out there.

    If the moderators allow it, I'll post the links in an edit. The articles, pdf's, etc are from a major university.

    I've also been tweaking a basic hard cheese recipe that I'll share soon

    Cheesemaker

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    KC, Misery-- It's Missouri- you have to 'Show Me'...
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    Default

    Great info...
    leave the gun... take the cannoli...

    In times of strength prepare for times of weakness...

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Default

    Thanx for posting and in the correct spot!
    Long as the links are not selling something then I see no problem.

    C
    P
    H
    Cry in training - laugh in battle

  4. #4
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    Default

    I also stickied this.
    Thanks again for joining and posting.
    Cry in training - laugh in battle

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
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    Canadian border state that begins with a "M"
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    Default

    You made me go check the "best by" dates on my Velveeta. Next box in the rotation has a date of July 2012.

    Guessing pasteurization and vacuum sealing makes the processed cheese safe similar to canned foods? If the package isn't bulging and it smells fine, it's probably fine? Sorry if I sound like a caveman in a fancy restaurant, or a Budweiser drinker in a Portland bar
    Everything marked, everything 'membered. You wait, you'll see.

  6. #6
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  7. #7
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    Default

    How about Canning or Dehydrating Cheese???

  8. #8
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    Dec 2014
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    Default

    I'm experimenting on dried cheese, but I think Kraft mac and cheese beat me on that a long time ago.

  9. #9
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    Default

    I was thinking more like small chunks dried

    Link for Kraft type powdered Cheeses in Bulk!!

    http://www.firehousepantrystore.com/bestsellers.html

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MacGyverRI View Post
    How about Canning or Dehydrating Cheese???
    We store some Bega canned cheese. It is OKish.

    Anyway, back to the original post, thanks for the info. Much appreciated.
    "I never should have made it, but I'm still alive" "Dead End Streets", RevCo

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