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Japanese cook Yoshihiro Goto takes out whale meat indigenous a freezer in a kitchen at a Japanese format restaurant in Tokyo. Junko Kimura News broke on Wednesday thata Chinese sting operation had actually seizedtruckloads that rancid meatdestined because that stores,some of which had actually been frozen and thawed repeatedly because the 1970s.“It was smelly. There to be a entirety truck of it,” one main told China’s state-run newspaper.

You are watching: Is it safe to eat 2 year old frozen meat


“I nearly threw up as soon as I opened the door.”

While we’re fairly grossed out by meat that hasn’t been fresh due to the fact that 8-track tape players were hip, it seems worthwhile come revisit the scientific research on the frozen food. Exactly how long have the right to meat stay frozen? have the right to you eat decades-old meat?

The U.S. Room of farming saysall food stored at zero degrees Fahrenheit is safe to eat—indefinitely(coincidentally, that’s the typical temperature for domestic freezers in the U.S.).

At really low temperatures, the molecules and enzymes that drive danger bacteria move so gradually that the offending microbes either dice or put dormant. So as soon as you thaw the meat days—or decades—later, the pathogens won’tget a opportunity to bounce back—as lengthy as girlfriend eat it in ~ a couple of hours.


The USDA claims that perhaps harmful bacteria, yeasts, molds and also even parasites favor trichina (found in pork) deserve to be foiled through zero level freezing.

But that comes through a severe caveat—you need to keep that uniformly frozen at precisely zero degrees the entirety time.

If you(or Chinese smugglers) have the right to keep her steaksstrictly frozen at all times, climate Mao-era meat would be totallysafe. However the temperature within your private freezer fluctuates rather a bit, and also smugglers aren’t recognized for diligentmaintenance the theircargo.

Although cooking destroysmost pathogens, the USDA warnsthat recurring freezing and thawing deserve to rot meat long prior to you obtain a opportunity to chef it. In a word,if you want to hand downa well-marbled ribeyeto your grandkids, nothing freeze it in ~ home.


So it is that.

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Of course, safe doesn’t median delicious. Decades-old frozen meat is tied to be rubbery and freezer-burned, come say the least.

Here’s a chart exactly how long meat products staytastyin the freezer:


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