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Thread: Freezer Burn

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    220

    Default Freezer Burn

    I have a small stash in the deep freezer (3 months old). It appears to have freezer burn (snowy on some cubes).

    Can I still use it?

    What if I do? Can anything harm baby?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    221

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    As far as I know freezer burn doesn't harm breast milk much.. mainly it's just the separation of water out of the mix and so long as the water is sealed in with the rest of the constituent milk it will recombine on thawing. However, the way I hear it, freezer burn normally happens when frozen material gets partially thawed and then refrozen a few times which doesn't bode well for the longevity of your milk.

    Freezing milk slows down the growth of micro-organisms but it doesn't actually stop it. That's why you can't keep milk indefinitely in a home deepfreeze (-20°C to -18°C or -4°F to 0°F). How long you can store it safely depends on how often you open your freezer and how much the temperature fluctuates in there. If you have a very cold deep freeze that you don't open often and you keep the frozen milk surrounded by other frozen material the milk might be okay after 6 months.

    The handout that I received from my hospital on milk storage said:
    • Freezer compartment in the fridge: 2 weeks
    • Separate door fridge/freezer: 3-4 months (depending on fluctuations in temperature - and NOT in the frezer door)
    • Separate deepfreeze at or below o°C: 6 months+

    I tend to be a bit on the paranoid side, but I would say "if in doubt, throw it out".

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    221

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    That being said, frost crystals on the outside of frozens aren't always from the frozen material.. is it possible that what you are seeing is not freezer burn, but frozen condensation from air that was packaged with the milk?
    Just an idea.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,866

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    Evidence-based milk storage guidelines:
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/milkstorage.html

    Recent research has proven that breastmilk is even more flexible than was previously known.

    "according to new findings in the journal Breastfeeding Medicine (2), checking breastmilk is actually a fine option. The researchers took frozen breastmilk and thawed it, refroze it, refrigerated it and left it out at room temperature. Essentially, they beat it up. What did they find? Breastmilk is fairly robust and does not grow bacteria easily nor lose vitamins A and C or free fatty acids (FFA) to any degree that would harm a full term baby."
    http://www.mothering.com/articles/ne...reastmilk.html

    Here's the journal article related to the quote above:
    D.J. Rechtman, M.L. Lee, H. Berg: "Effect of Environmental Conditions on Unpasteurized Donor Human Milk," Breastfeeding Medicine, 1, 1 (2006):24-26.

    If your milk doesn't smell sour (like rotten milk), and it doesn't taste puke-worthy () it's good.

    To answer your question, freezer burnt food isn't rotten, but the food has changed in texture and flavor.
    http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/qa-sto3.html
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freezer_burn

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    221

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    I bow to your superior information literacy and patience!
    Kudos!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    198

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    i was told bm in a deep freezer can last up to a year cause i have over 4000 oz stored it there

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,866

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    It can, Holly! See the links I posted earlier in the thread.

    HTH!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    198

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    i was told by the director of the mothers milk of ohio that i could store it for up to a year but hopefully i will use it

  9. #9

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    Quote Originally Posted by hollymomof3 View Post
    i have over 4000 oz stored it there
    ~Brandi~

    Loving wife to K
    Proud stepmom to B, and proud mom to J and R-A
    and our newest addition C

    Happily homeschooling
    Still and and

    Ask me about Parkinson's Disease! Visit me at Life With Shaky!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    6,959

    Default Re: Freezer Burn

    Quote Originally Posted by hollymomof3 View Post
    i was told by the director of the mothers milk of ohio that i could store it for up to a year but hopefully i will use it
    You can also donate it.

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