Ask Tess: Do I need to rotate my canned vegetables and fruits in my pantry?


Do I need to rotate my canned vegetables and fruits in my pantry?





I prefer to rotate my canned goods every 6 months to ensure that the food in my pantry is all within the food’s expiration. Now that I said that, I should also explain that even though the cans of food have gone past their expiration doesn’t mean it’s not edible. It only means that the food company’s guaranteed the freshness of that product up to that specific date. The date is usually 2-5 years from the manufacture date.

Here are some signs of spoiled food to look for:

  • color changes
  • cloudiness in liquid
  • soft food texture
  • crystals growing on top of food
  • strange appearance or texture
  • off smell

Many have found canned goods dating back multiple decades and the food is still edible because the environment of the food is still sterile. Also, high acid foods usually have a shorter shelf life compared to low acid foods. For emergency storage, commercially canned foods in metal or jars will remain safe to consume as long as the seal has not been broken. However, the quality of the food may be an issue.

I hope this helps!


The Prepper's Blueprint

Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.

Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals. 

Visit her web site at for an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published February 4th, 2014
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  • Trudy Soura

    I live alone but have to be prepared for my family coming in an emergency like the 6 days they were without electric durning IRMA.So rotating just isnt going to happen, and I cant afford to stock and give away or through away if out of date.My question here is ,Has anyone know how mashed potatoes can be stored and minute rice ? I can repkg with o2 absorbers and mylar bags ? It would have been to hot and fuel consuming to cook reg rice. So I just wondered if any one knows ? Or any other long term food from the grocery store Like pastas ? Im trying to avoid the profesional long term survival foods. Though I have a few.

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