Canned foods

Canned foods

Canned foods are usually kept in a dry store which is cool, well ventilated and free from condensation. Stock rotation is important, especially cans of high-acid fruit, such as prunes, rhubarb and tomatoes which may blow if sorted longer than recommended by the manufacture. (The acid attacks the can wall, especially at the seam, to produce gas.) Cans should be inspected weekly and blown, leaking or rusty cans removed. Stock rotation is important although some cans, e.g. containing fish in oil,may keep for at least 5 years.

On opening, cans contents should be placed in the refrigerator in a suitable covered container if not required for immediate use. This will avoid mould and contamination problems and shards of metal ending up in the food. Furthermore, acid food attacks the can wall and excessive amounts of tin or iron may end up in the food which is likely to develop a metallic taint.

If the food is discoloured or has a unusual smell or texture, or the interior of the can is rusty, the food should be rejected.

Some large cans of meat, especially ham, may only have been pasteurised and therefore need to be stored under refrigeration. If this is the case the can will be clearly labelled.