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Old 02-21-2008, 07:49 PM   #21
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Up here, and we have a milk co right in town, the milk always goes bad within a day of the sell by date. Sometimes after, most of the time before.
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Old 02-21-2008, 07:54 PM   #22
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Cottage cheese has a remarkable way of lasting much longer than the expiration date on the carton. One thing you can do to keep it from spoiling sooner than it might is to store the carton upside down before AND after opening. I've been doing this for years and it really does make a difference. I also store sour cream and ricotta cheese this way.

A friend of mine who was a chef said he was taught to store these foods this way. He didn't tell me the "why" of it, just that it works. I've tested side-by-side containers and there really IS a difference. Maybe one of our scientist-types can explain.
First, I'm not sure that it is actually true, but there is much anecdotal evidence to support it. I am willing to take a couple of guesses.

1. Most people would be leery that the seal on the cartons would not be tight enough to prevent leakage. As a consequence, they would tend to store the inverted cottage cheese on the bottom part of the refrigerator where it is probably the coldest. There is no doubt that the colder you hold dairy products, the longer they last.

2. In processing, the top is exposed to air after the container is filled but before the top is on and sealed. During that brief period, airborne mold spores and bacteria will collect on the surface. Inverting the container may deprive the micro-organisms of oxygen necessary to grow as fast.

Just guesses mind you.
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Old 02-21-2008, 08:13 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mozart View Post
First, I'm not sure that it is actually true, but there is much anecdotal evidence to support it. I am willing to take a couple of guesses.

1. Most people would be leery that the seal on the cartons would not be tight enough to prevent leakage. As a consequence, they would tend to store the inverted cottage cheese on the bottom part of the refrigerator where it is probably the coldest. There is no doubt that the colder you hold dairy products, the longer they last.

2. In processing, the top is exposed to air after the container is filled but before the top is on and sealed. During that brief period, airborne mold spores and bacteria will collect on the surface. Inverting the container may deprive the micro-organisms of oxygen necessary to grow as fast.

Just guesses mind you.
Yes, mozart, I'm fully aware that the bottom (especially near the rear) of a refrigerator is the coldest part of the appliance. However, in my experience, over at least 15+ years, no matter where in the refrigerator I store sour cream, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese in the upside down position, they last and last and last and... You get the idea.

I've had very few occasions where the containers leaked when stored upside down. At first I was a bit apprehensive about doing this for fear that my refrigerator shelves would be covered with a dairy muck. I just know I'm sold on this method of storage.
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Old 02-22-2008, 06:42 AM   #24
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We ate the cottage cheese.(not to mention the properly thawed and refrigerated chicken)
Here I sit the next day, alive an kickin'!!
Thanks Michael for the clear up on the dates, they always bug me I wish they would just all be EXPIRATION dates so I dont get so confused. (However that's not hard to do...)
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Old 02-22-2008, 06:57 AM   #25
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Katie is 100% correct. I was taught in one of my food safety classes, I have a life time certificate in food protection, that one should store cottage cheese and other similarily packaged dairy products, upside down. The fluids in the container are what seals the cottage cheese product and does not allow air to enter the container. This storage method does prolong the shelf life of the product. Store the containers up side down anywhere in the frig the whole time you have the product.
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Old 02-22-2008, 08:50 AM   #26
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Katie is 100% correct. I was taught in one of my food safety classes, I have a life time certificate in food protection, that one should store cottage cheese and other similarly packaged dairy products, upside down. The fluids in the container are what seals the cottage cheese product and does not allow air to enter the container. This storage method does prolong the shelf life of the product. Store the containers up side down anywhere in the frig the whole time you have the product.
So, I'm wondering , if this is universally true, why at least one of the hundreds of brands of these dairy products don't say "store upside down"?

Or better yet, why none haven't just inverted the labeling so the lid is on the bottom like they do with squeeze mayo.

Also, if Katie has been doing this for 15+ years, how would she know that it is working now? Products change over time and Daile shelf life has certainly improved from when I was a kid. (which was a lot more than 15 yrs ago)

I suppose a cynic would say that all these companies want there product to go bad sooner so they can sell more.

Again, not doubting the anecdotal evidence, but it is interesting to me that the dairy industry, who employ tons of scientists, haven't figured this out.
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Old 02-22-2008, 09:44 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by mozart View Post
So, I'm wondering , if this is universally true, why at least one of the hundreds of brands of these dairy products don't say "store upside down"?

Or better yet, why none haven't just inverted the labeling so the lid is on the bottom like they do with squeeze mayo.

Also, if Katie has been doing this for 15+ years, how would she know that it is working now? Products change over time and Daile shelf life has certainly improved from when I was a kid. (which was a lot more than 15 yrs ago)

I suppose a cynic would say that all these companies want there product to go bad sooner so they can sell more.

Again, not doubting the anecdotal evidence, but it is interesting to me that the dairy industry, who employ tons of scientists, haven't figured this out.
You bring up some curious points, mozart.

I've never seen a carton that instructing me "not" to store the product upside down. I'll have to be on the lookout for that. And, at this point at least, we don't have any foods in our refrigerator that are in the upside down-type containers.

When I discovered that my foods seemed to last longer in the upside down position, I just kept putting them in my refrigerator that way. Guess that's why I keep doing it after so many years.

The most interesting point you raise is that the producers don't recommend storing their products in the upside down position or that they don't label their items such that they would be stored upside down.

All very interesting and makes me wonder if they, as you pose, are depending on repeat purchases because of spoiling.
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Old 02-22-2008, 10:09 AM   #28
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Another thing to consider is whether or not the product has been properly refrigerated from plant to the store and is the store maintaining proper temp . Another thing you can do is check behind any refridgerated product to see if they have stocked the fresher behind the stuff on the front of shelves. I always check my cheese, lunch meat everything to see if there is newer behind. Living so far from a decent grocery store It helps a lot. In the summer I take an ice chest to put perishables in to keep them cold along with frozen items. Some of the stores here offer free dry ice as well.
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Old 02-22-2008, 10:14 AM   #29
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I think it's only a matter of time, Katie.
Look at squeezable mayo and catsup.... Anyone notice how you don't get that clear liquid in catsup with those types of bottles?
And there's the liter bottles of pop I mention way back, too. I recall seeing a gadget co make a top specifically for storing the bottles on end and then being able to pour from their top without unscrewing.
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Old 02-22-2008, 10:34 AM   #30
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[quote=pacanis;554363]I think it's only a matter of time, Katie.
Look at squeezable mayo and catsup.... Anyone notice how you don't get that clear liquid in catsup with those types of bottles?
quote]

Or we could just be fooling ourselves and the clear liquid is now settling on what has become the top (the bottle bottom)

EEWww. I just had a thought. What is the upside down cottage cheese was growing its mold on the "new top" ( the old bottom)? How would you know? You flip it over and it looks fine, but down at the bottom there is a mold party going on
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