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Hi
Is there anybody out there who uses nitrogen to expel the oxygen content from deep stored goods?.
the uk survivalist
Not if they're smart. That's the old way the long term storage companies used to put away dried goods. It didn't work terribly well for several reasons. Mostly because it didn't displace enough O2. Modern O2 absorbers are far more effective than nitrogen or dry ice flushing and that's what they all use now.
 

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Not if they're smart. That's the old way the long term storage companies used to put away dried goods. It didn't work terribly well for several reasons. Mostly because it didn't displace enough O2. Modern O2 absorbers are far more effective than nitrogen or dry ice flushing and that's what they all use now.
I think they now use the O2 absorbers because they are cheaper.

I have nitrogen packed grain that has been good after 15 years in the bucket.

The problem I had was the bucket was getting brittle so I opened it up and ate the grain.

It is best to use a food grade bag as a liner for the bucket to hold the grain before using nitrogen. Dry Ice is ok, but I prefered the bottled nitrogen due to easy keeping for later use.

Dry Ice will be gone even if you put it in a freezer.

later
wayne
 

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I think they now use the O2 absorbers because they are cheaper.

I have nitrogen packed grain that has been good after 15 years in the bucket.

The problem I had was the bucket was getting brittle so I opened it up and ate the grain.

It is best to use a food grade bag as a liner for the bucket to hold the grain before using nitrogen. Dry Ice is ok, but I prefered the bottled nitrogen due to easy keeping for later use.

Dry Ice will be gone even if you put it in a freezer.

later
wayne
Nitrogen flushing is what they used in the early days of food storage and it worked. That's probably how companies such as Nitro-Pak originally got their name.

The report I am remembering was done by an independant lab and was testing the O2 percentages in the head gas of cans packed by various methods. It also tested weevil infestation numbers.

They mentioned that nitrogen was cheaper to use, but they probably didn't factor in the additional labor. I would assume it's faster and easier to drop in O2 absorbers and seal.

Anyway, the O2 levels in nitrogen and dry ice flushed cans was high enough that it limited the types of foods that could be packed by those methods. Gas flushing works well for certain types of foods and not for others though. Grains do very well in any reduced O2 atmosphere. Foods such as biscuit mix with shortening wouldn't last as long because of oxidative rancidity.

Where the difference was most noticeable was in weevil activity. They packed grain infested with weevil eggs, allowed them to sit for some time then opened them and counted the weevils. The gas flushed cans had enough residual O2 to allow the bugs to reproduce for enough generations to pretty much ruin the contents. The cans packed with O2 absorbers had just enough to allow the weevils to hatch but they soon used up what little O2 they had and died. Cans packed in air were completely infested and the weevils were still alive many generations later when the cans were opened.

Cans treated with diatomaceous earth before sealing had no weevil activity. So a DE treated can would be weevil safe regardless of whether it was flushed or an O2 absorber was used.

Essentially, the tests showed that O2 absorbers outperformed gas flushing by a pretty large margin. They're easy to get now too. I'd sure like to get some data on how long they will last sealed. I want to pack a bunch of them away long term for food storage down the road. I also have a tank of nitrogen and a wand as backup.
 
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