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Tortilla shelf life

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  • Swamy LLM
    I m planning to carry Tortillas and PBJ for lunch on trail. But I see shelf life is not more than 2-3 weeks. I m looking for tortillas with shelf life of about
    Message 1 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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      I'm planning to carry Tortillas and PBJ for lunch on trail. But I see shelf life is not more than 2-3 weeks.
      I'm looking for tortillas with shelf life of about 5 weeks from the date I ship my resupply bucket (to last resupply point) to date I consume the last tortilla.  Are there any brands with such long shelf time?
      -swamy
    • groundhogsteve
      I had tried to super-sanitize my hands and surroundings before repackaging the food, but last year even at my TM resupply the pepperoni was getting fuzzy, and
      Message 2 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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        I had tried to super-sanitize my hands and surroundings before repackaging the food, but last year even at my TM resupply the pepperoni was getting fuzzy, and that was one reason I stopped my trip.

        Other food items I noticed were going bad in the resupply were the trail mix (I had cut up dried apricots and  included them int eh mix, the peanuts seemd to absorb the moisture remaining in the apricots, and were all soft and rather unappealing.

        Just tested some items by leaving them out for the past month in the kitchen - dried papaya, dried apricots, dried pineapple, tortillas (ordinary grocery store brand), pepperoni, and summer sausage.  All were left in their original unopened packaging, and all came through fine.  So wait until you get your resupply before you repackage.

        Anybody else have food disasters they can warn us about (aside from the usual "menu too monotonous")?
      • Jason Schlager
        Anyone know if it would help lengthen shelf life to repackage tortillas with oxygen asorbers?
        Message 3 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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          Anyone know if it would help lengthen shelf life to repackage tortillas with oxygen asorbers?

        • berdomb
          Most store-bought tortillas keep a long time in a ziplock. Some brands like Mission, have expiration dates over a month away if you catch a fresh shipment. And
          Message 4 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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            Most store-bought tortillas keep a long time in a ziplock. 
            Some brands like Mission, have expiration dates over a month away if you catch a fresh shipment.

            And some brands, like Old El Paso , (with the mexican stuff in that section, not with other tortillas), has exipration date many months away, like 4-5 months.

            Ive eaten tortillas more than 5 weeks after putting in ziplocks and they were fine.

            Dont make the mistake of vacuum packing them without putting wax paper in between. You will end up with a single solid block, as one AT hiker I ran into found out.
          • eric moss
            ... with oxygen asorbers? FWIW, I m going nuts with gear acquisition syndrome (GAS), telling myself it s a good idea. ;) So I m buying a dehydrator
            Message 5 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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              > On Sat, May 17, 2014 at 4:06 PM, Jason Schlager jmschlager@... [johnmuirtrail]
              > <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
               
              > Anyone know if it would help lengthen shelf life to repackage tortillas with oxygen asorbers?

              FWIW, I'm going nuts with gear acquisition syndrome (GAS), telling myself it's a good idea. ;)  So I'm buying a dehydrator (www.rawrutes.com -- 'murrican-made!) and a vacuum packer (probably ARY VP215C).  Cheaper versions should be enough to help preserve, in tandem with oxygen absorbers.

              Honestly, based on what I've read, I'd rather pack ingredients, test some basic trail-worthy recipes, and make my own on the trail.  We'll see how that works out -- it takes a lot of discipline -- but a well-sealed bag of flour fits in between things, tolerates sitting in the MTR shed for 3 weeks, and makes all sorts of tasty things -- tortillas, pancakes (make your own mix with Nido powder, powdered egg, leavening, freeze-dried blueberries), etc.

              Come October, I may be retracting everything I've said...


            • John Ladd
              From some past experience with the food manufacturing industry (I was a lawyer for a grocery stoye product manufacturer once upon a time), I d say the labelled
              Message 6 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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                From some past experience with the food manufacturing industry (I was a lawyer for a grocery stoye product manufacturer once upon a time), I'd say the labelled shelf life is determined more by marketing than by any real science. Some brands like to have short shelf life as it forces the stores to restock more often and maybe keeps the product a bit fresher. The more popular and high volume brands can get away with shorter stated shelf lives. Brands with less movement -- which are sometimes the higher quality stuff -- often chose longer shelf date labels in hopes that it will make the stores more comfortable stocking the slower-moving product.

                Any brand that is sold in the non-refrigerated section of the store is going to try to make it keep as long as possible (in original packaging).

                That said, I'd also look probably the brand with the pull date furthest off. Those brands that chose to label with long shelf life have to take some steps to make sure they don't embarrass themselves.

                And I'd leave in original packaging as long as possible.

                John Curran Ladd
                1616 Castro Street
                San Francisco, CA  94114-3707
                415-648-9279


                On Sat, May 17, 2014 at 12:25 PM, Swamy LLM llmswamy@... [johnmuirtrail] <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
                 

                I'm planning to carry Tortillas and PBJ for lunch on trail. But I see shelf life is not more than 2-3 weeks.
                I'm looking for tortillas with shelf life of about 5 weeks from the date I ship my resupply bucket (to last resupply point) to date I consume the last tortilla.  Are there any brands with such long shelf time?
                -swamy


              • dr.suuz_2013
                I bought Ole Mexican Foods Xtreme Wellness Soft Taco Tortilla Wraps with an expiration date of 7/11/14 at our local Kroger on May 14. They re made with olive
                Message 7 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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                  I bought Ole Mexican Foods Xtreme Wellness Soft Taco Tortilla Wraps with an expiration date of 7/11/14 at our local Kroger on May 14. They're made with olive oil and are tasty enough to overcome an aversion to cold tortillas developed eating them daily on the JMT last summer. We're shipping food next week for a 140-mile AT section in June, so the long expiration date was attractive.
                • Shawn Peterson
                  ... Yes, don t ever put a quart sized zip lock bag full of Nutella in your bear can and then sit on the lid to get the very full can to close....that subtle
                  Message 8 of 20 , May 17, 2014
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                    Anybody else have food disasters they can warn us about


                    Yes, don't ever put a quart sized zip lock bag full of Nutella in your bear can and then sit on the lid to get the very full can to close....that subtle "pop" from within the can isn't going to be your screw lugs catching and closing....two hours of clean up and repacking guaranteed.

                    Sent from my iPad

                    On May 17, 2014, at 12:50 PM, "groundhogsteve@... [johnmuirtrail]" <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                     

                    I had tried to super-sanitize my hands and surroundings before repackaging the food, but last year even at my TM resupply the pepperoni was getting fuzzy, and that was one reason I stopped my trip.

                    Other food items I noticed were going bad in the resupply were the trail mix (I had cut up dried apricots and  included them int eh mix, the peanuts seemd to absorb the moisture remaining in the apricots, and were all soft and rather unappealing.

                    Just tested some items by leaving them out for the past month in the kitchen - dried papaya, dried apricots, dried pineapple, tortillas (ordinary grocery store brand), pepperoni, and summer sausage.  All were left in their original unopened packaging, and all came through fine.  So wait until you get your resupply before you repackage.

                    Anybody else have food disasters they can warn us about (aside from the usual "menu too monotonous")?

                  • John Ladd
                    Food disasters: a few of mine Don t try to use a Lexan spoon in retrieving felafels from the hot oil you just used to cook them. The burned plastic smell will
                    Message 9 of 20 , May 18, 2014
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                      Food disasters: a few of mine

                      Don't try to use a Lexan spoon in retrieving felafels from the hot oil you just used to cook them. The burned plastic smell will pretty much ruin the flavor. Also dont leave the JetBoil sleeve on with hot oil - it fuses to the metal.

                      Don't pack homemade pesto in any jar other than a Nalgene widemouth. Everything else will leave pesto over all the rest of your food.

                      Don't forget any food in the bottom of your pack when you put it away for months.


                      On Sat, May 17, 2014 at 11:32 PM, Shawn Peterson pdawg893@... [johnmuirtrail] <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
                      Anybody else have food disasters they can warn us about



                      John Curran Ladd
                      1616 Castro Street
                      San Francisco, CA  94114-3707
                      415-648-9279
                    • Peter Hirst
                      Food disasters: a classic! On May 18, 2014, at 1:52 AM, John Ladd johnladd@gmail.com [johnmuirtrail] wrote: Food disasters: a few of mine Don t try to use a
                      Message 10 of 20 , May 18, 2014
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                        Food disasters:  a classic!

                        On May 18, 2014, at 1:52 AM, John Ladd johnladd@... [johnmuirtrail] wrote:

                         

                        Food disasters: a few of mine

                        Don't try to use a Lexan spoon in retrieving felafels from the hot oil you just used to cook them. The burned plastic smell will pretty much ruin the flavor. Also dont leave the JetBoil sleeve on with hot oil - it fuses to the metal.

                        Don't pack homemade pesto in any jar other than a Nalgene widemouth. Everything else will leave pesto over all the rest of your food.

                        Don't forget any food in the bottom of your pack when you put it away for months.


                        On Sat, May 17, 2014 at 11:32 PM, Shawn Peterson pdawg893@... [johnmuirtrail] <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
                        Anybody else have food disasters they can warn us about



                        John Curran Ladd
                        1616 Castro Street
                        San Francisco, CA  94114-3707
                        415-648-9279


                      • Billy
                        I once packed up a tent with a bagel and cream cheese for the whole winter.# smelly Sent from my iPhone
                        Message 11 of 20 , May 18, 2014
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                          I once packed up a tent with a bagel and cream cheese for the whole winter.# smelly

                          Sent from my iPhone

                          On May 18, 2014, at 2:32 AM, "Shawn Peterson pdawg893@... [johnmuirtrail]" <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                           

                          Anybody else have food disasters they can warn us about


                          Yes, don't ever put a quart sized zip lock bag full of Nutella in your bear can and then sit on the lid to get the very full can to close....that subtle "pop" from within the can isn't going to be your screw lugs catching and closing....two hours of clean up and repacking guaranteed.

                          Sent from my iPad

                          On May 17, 2014, at 12:50 PM, "groundhogsteve@... [johnmuirtrail]" <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                           

                          I had tried to super-sanitize my hands and surroundings before repackaging the food, but last year even at my TM resupply the pepperoni was getting fuzzy, and that was one reason I stopped my trip.

                          Other food items I noticed were going bad in the resupply were the trail mix (I had cut up dried apricots and  included them int eh mix, the peanuts seemd to absorb the moisture remaining in the apricots, and were all soft and rather unappealing.

                          Just tested some items by leaving them out for the past month in the kitchen - dried papaya, dried apricots, dried pineapple, tortillas (ordinary grocery store brand), pepperoni, and summer sausage.  All were left in their original unopened packaging, and all came through fine.  So wait until you get your resupply before you repackage.

                          Anybody else have food disasters they can warn us about (aside from the usual "menu too monotonous")?

                        • byronnevins
                          I made the same horrific mistake of putting dried apricots in my trail mix. It turned into a smelly disgusting inedible mess. And I m talking inedible peanut
                          Message 12 of 20 , May 19, 2014
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                            I made the same horrific mistake of putting dried apricots in my trail mix.  It turned into a smelly disgusting inedible mess.  And I'm talking inedible peanut M&Ms here!  Now I just go with the pros.  The Kirkland individually wrapped trail  mix is fine.  Huge caloric payload.

                            Trident gum in a Bearicade has some sort of weird chemical reaction.  Which makes the taste of other things like tortillas disgusting.  Triple pack the gum!

                            I had DEET (100%)  in a plastic bottle in my MTR bucket.  That should be fine -- right?  Wrong!  Ate through it and destroyed all the food it could get into.

                              
                          • byronnevins
                            My guess is that they pack them sterile. I wouldn t open them at all. At least until you re on the trail and ready for a cheese and bacon quesadilla. Or a
                            Message 13 of 20 , May 19, 2014
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                              My guess is that they pack them sterile.  I wouldn't open them at all.  At least until you're on the trail and ready for a cheese and bacon quesadilla.  Or a butter/sugar/cinnamon fried tortilla.  I lived off this stuff in 2012 on the trail!

                            • ravi_jmt2013
                              I ve had good luck with repackaging Mission tortillas as long as they are within the expiration date. I repackage them in gallon ziplocks if I don t need all
                              Message 14 of 20 , May 19, 2014
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                                I've had good luck with repackaging Mission tortillas as long as they are within the expiration date.  I repackage them in gallon ziplocks if I don't need all ten that come in a package.  I sent six in a resupply last month on the AT and they were fine after a couple of weeks sitting in the box.  On the JMT last year, I left the tortillas in the original packaging in my resupplies and they were fine since the expiration date was quite far off. 
                              • Swamy LLM
                                I just repacked dried mango pieces in to 20 individual ziplock snack bags yesterday. Seems that s not going work. I have food saver vacuum sealer. I ll
                                Message 15 of 20 , May 19, 2014
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                                  I just repacked dried mango pieces in to 20 individual ziplock snack bags yesterday.
                                   Seems that's not going work.
                                   
                                  I have food saver vacuum sealer. I'll transfer them to vacuum sealed packs.
                                   
                                  thanks for advice everyone.

                                   

                                  To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                                  From: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                                  Date: Mon, 19 May 2014 15:59:43 -0700
                                  Subject: [John Muir Trail] Re: Tortilla shelf life

                                   
                                  I made the same horrific mistake of putting dried apricots in my trail mix.  It turned into a smelly disgusting inedible mess.  And I'm talking inedible peanut M&Ms here!  Now I just go with the pros.  The Kirkland individually wrapped trail  mix is fine.  Huge caloric payload.

                                  Trident gum in a Bearicade has some sort of weird chemical reaction.  Which makes the taste of other things like tortillas disgusting.  Triple pack the gum!

                                  I had DEET (100%)  in a plastic bottle in my MTR bucket.  That should be fine -- right?  Wrong!  Ate through it and destroyed all the food it could get into.

                                    


                                • Swamy LLM
                                  I ll go with Mission tortillas. Is there specific one lost longer than others ? I mean, corn vs. flour vs. support soft To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com From:
                                  Message 16 of 20 , May 19, 2014
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                                    I'll go with Mission tortillas.
                                    Is there specific one lost longer than others ?
                                     I mean, corn vs. flour vs. support soft 
                                     

                                    To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                                    From: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                                    Date: Mon, 19 May 2014 16:47:54 -0700
                                    Subject: [John Muir Trail] Re: Tortilla shelf life

                                     
                                    I've had good luck with repackaging Mission tortillas as long as they are within the expiration date.  I repackage them in gallon ziplocks if I don't need all ten that come in a package.  I sent six in a resupply last month on the AT and they were fine after a couple of weeks sitting in the box.  On the JMT last year, I left the tortillas in the original packaging in my resupplies and they were fine since the expiration date was quite far off. 
                                  • whcobbs
                                    Dried apricot and dried mango pieces are both stable if they are packed loose in oatmeal or couscous, I have kept them for six months this way in ziplock
                                    Message 17 of 20 , May 20, 2014
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                                      Dried apricot and dried mango pieces are both stable if they are packed loose in oatmeal or couscous, I have kept them for six months this way in ziplock individual add-boiling-water meals.  The apricot pieces are not stable packed loose in a ziplock containing a paper packet of instant oatmeal.

                                       

                                      Walt

                                    • John Ladd
                                      You can also carefully press mango slices into a tight stack and then trim the edges so you have a cube or rectangular block of tightly stacked mango slices.
                                      Message 18 of 20 , May 20, 2014
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                                        You can also carefully press mango slices into a tight stack and then trim the edges so you have a cube or rectangular block of tightly stacked mango slices. Put the trimmings into the oatmeal (or yellow grits/polenta - my favorite breakfast). The stack/block of slices is now largely protected from O2 contact as the outside slices protect the inner ones and lasts a long time (longer than I've ever needed them to) and packs more compactly. Peel off slices from the block one at a time from alternating sides as trail snacks.

                                        Works, say, with Trader Joe's dried mango slices.

                                        John Curran Ladd
                                        1616 Castro Street
                                        San Francisco, CA  94114-3707
                                        415-648-9279


                                        On Tue, May 20, 2014 at 5:40 AM, walter.cobbs@... [johnmuirtrail] <johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
                                         

                                        Dried apricot and dried mango pieces are both stable if they are packed loose in oatmeal or couscous, I have kept them for six months this way in ziplock individual add-boiling-water meals.  The apricot pieces are not stable packed loose in a ziplock containing a paper packet of instant oatmeal.

                                         

                                        Walt


                                      • berdomb
                                        Or, you could just buy tortillas at VVR , they carry them.
                                        Message 19 of 20 , May 20, 2014
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                                          Or, you could just buy tortillas at VVR , they carry them.
                                        • kellymelissaray
                                          Your comments about the expiration dates on food products reminded me of a delightful little Norwegian film I watched last year that featured two adventurous
                                          Message 20 of 20 , May 21, 2014
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                                            Your comments about the expiration dates on food products reminded me of a delightful little Norwegian film I watched last year that featured two adventurous young men who lived an entire winter off of expired (and therefore free) food from the grocery store.  The true heart of the film, however, has to do with making your own adventure and self-reliance and a lot of wonderful other things.  If you haven't had a chance to see it, it's charming:


                                            That's it.  Thanks for your ever-thoughtful and interesting posts to this forum!  

                                            Kelly
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