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Thread: how long before feeding from freezer stores

  1. #1

    Default how long before feeding from freezer stores

    I know it is safe to feed milk that has been stored for several months in the freezer, but I am interested in knowing how common it is to feed infants milk that has been stored that long. Do you usually feed it to your infant within a few days, a week, a couple of weeks, or months? Do people pump a lot in the first few months and stockpile it for use several months later?
    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,056

    Default Re: how long before feeding from freezer stores

    My supply was definitely bigger @ the beginning, and I would be pumping 1-2 extra feedings per day while at work. At the end of the week, I would take what was extra and freeze it.

    Once the oldest milk got to be 3 mos, I started rotating it into what I sent to daycare (i.e., 1 frozen, 2 fresh). I would also use it to make my baby's purees when he started eating solid food.

    As he got older and started eating more food, my supply went down as a result. I would usually pump only what he needed, with the occasional off day when I was on my cycle where I would need one out of the freezer. I still made sure to rotate any milk that was about to "expire".

    3 mos is the limit for a regular freezer (attached to fridge, but separate door) - I really think you can stretch that to 4-5 mos, as long as your milk tastes okay. You want to be careful of lipase, which is an enzyme some women have more than others that will make their milk "sour" in the freezer unless pretreated. There's a few stickies on it. A stand-alone deep freezer (0 degrees) can store 6-12 mos.

    Hope that helps!
    Little SW, Aug '09
    Miss MW, Jan '11
    Sir RW, Oct '12
    3 kids in 38 mos

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    153

    Default Re: how long before feeding from freezer stores

    I did similar to PP. Once I had a stash built up I would do about half and half fresh and frozen. My LO never showed a preference for one over the other. Because I built up so much at the beginning and continued to pump extra for most of my pumping time, we definitely used milk that was 3mo+ old. LO is 17 mo and currently drinking cow's milk mixed with frozen breastmilk from November '09 (we have a deep freezer).

  4. #4

    Smile Re: how long before feeding from freezer stores

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mima View Post
    I did similar to PP. Once I had a stash built up I would do about half and half fresh and frozen. My LO never showed a preference for one over the other. Because I built up so much at the beginning and continued to pump extra for most of my pumping time, we definitely used milk that was 3mo+ old. LO is 17 mo and currently drinking cow's milk mixed with frozen breastmilk from November '09 (we have a deep freezer).
    Thanks to both of you for sharing your experience--this is great! I hope to hear from more people too since this is a little research project for me and I am trying to get a sense of how most women manage their frozen breast milk. There is a lot of info on what is OK and not OK to do, but not a lot of info on what women are actually doing. Thanks again!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    360

    Default Re: how long before feeding from freezer stores

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*grandma2b View Post
    I know it is safe to feed milk that has been stored for several months in the freezer, but I am interested in knowing how common it is to feed infants milk that has been stored that long. Do you usually feed it to your infant within a few days, a week, a couple of weeks, or months? Do people pump a lot in the first few months and stockpile it for use several months later?
    Thanks!
    In the early days right after my milk came in, I would pump (2 to 4 oz) every day so I could build a freezer stash. By the time I returned to work when my LO was 10 weeks, I had over supply. At work, I pump an extra 5 to 10 ounces per day. On Mondays, my LO gets this frozen EBM so I can rotate my stash. Currently, the oldest I have is from early March, which is just over three months old. I just donated 200 ounces, and I'm looking to donate a few hundred more from April! I don't want to see my BM go to waste!
    First baby Thanos Liam born on 12/20/2009... we are and since birth and still going strong!!

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