>>

Food storage

conservation
Here's a chart indicating the ideal temperature and storage duration for the foods we're so fond of. In addition, a few simple rules to follow for optimizing storage will make the task a snap
Conservation des aliments
  • When putting away your groceries, be sure to rotate the food on your shelves. The oldest purchases should of course be eaten first. 
  • Check your fridge temperature now and then: it should be between 0 and 4°C, and your freezer should be around -18°C. 
  • Transfer leftover tinned food to airtight plastic containers and store in fridge. 
  • The best-before date is valid only if the packaging is still intact. The date does not apply once the package is open. 
  • To thaw food, place on the lower fridge shelf on a cloth or paper towels, to prevent liquid from dripping onto other food. 
  • Place the most perishable products such as meat and dairy products in the middle of the fridge, the coldest part. Less fragile food such as condiments and beverages can easily be stored in the door. 
  • Never refreeze food that has been thawed. Freezing alters the food texture, which makes it easier to microorganisms to grow.

Meat and poultry storage chart

  Refrigerator
4°C
Freezer
-18 °C
Cooked poultry
3-4 days
1-3 months
Poultry pieces
1-2 days
6-9 months
Whole poultry 
1-3 days
10-12 months
Whole cooked ham
7-10 days
1-2 months
Sliced cooked ham
3-5 days
1-2 months
Cooked pork
3-4 days
2-3 months
Bacon (after opening)
7 days
1-2 months
Beef (steaks, roasts)
3-5 days
6-12 months
Lamb (chops, roast)
3-5 days
6-9 months
Cretons
3-5 days
1-2 months
Fresh sausages 
1-2 days
2-3 months
Whole dry sausages 
2-3 weeks
-
Veal (roasts)
3-5 days
4-8 months
Cooked meat 
3-4 days
2-3 months
Smoked deli meat
5-6 days
1-2 months
Ground, cubed or thinly sliced meat
1-2 days
3-4 months
Offal (liver, heart, etc.)
1-2 days
3-4 months

Fish and seafood storage chart

  Refrigerator
4°C
Freezer
-18 °C
Cooked crab 
1-2 days
1 month
Shrimp 
1-2 days
2-4 months
Oysters in the shell
2-3 weeks -
Oysters, shucked 
10 days
2-4 months
Mussels in the shell
2-3 days
-
Mussels, shelled 
1-2 days
3 months
Clams in the shell
3-4 days
-
Clams, shelled 
1-2 days
3 months
Fatty fish (salmon, trout, etc.)
1-2 days
2 months
Lean fish (sole, tilapia, etc.) 
2-3 days
6 months
Scallops 
1-2 days
3 months
Cold-smoked fish
3-4 days
2 months

Egg storage chart

  Refrigerator
4°C
Freezer
-18 °C
Fresh egg in the shell 
1 month
-
Hardboiled egg
1 week
-
Raw egg white
1 week 9 months
Raw egg yolk
2-3 days
4 months

Fruit and vegetable storage chart

  Refrigerator
4°C
Freezer
-18 °C
Asparagus
4 days 1 year
Eggplant
7 days
1 year
Beets
3 weeks 1 year
Blueberries
5 days
1 year
Broccoli
5 days
1 year
Cranberries
2 weeks 1 year
Carrots
3 months 1 year
Celery
2 weeks -
Mushrooms
5 days
1 year
Cabbage
2 weeks
1 year
Cauliflower
6 days
1 year
Brussels sprouts 6 days
1 year
Cucumber
1 week
-
Zucchini (summer squash)
1 week
1 year
Endives
3-4 days
-
Spinach
4-5 days
1 year
Bean sprouts 
3-4 days
-
Strawberries, raspberries
3-4 days
1 year
Alfalfa, soybean sprouts 
3 days
-
Green or yellow beans
5-6 days
1 year
Lettuce 1 week -
Corn on the cob 
2-3 days
1 year
Honeydew, cantaloupe, watermelon
4 days
-
Turnip 
1 week 1 year
Green onions 
1 week 1 year
Parsnips 
1 months 1 year
Leek
2 weeks 1 year
Green peas, snow peas
2 days
1 year
Sweet pepper
1 week 1 year
Apples (February to July) 
2 weeks 1 year
Apples (August to January) 
6 months 1 year
Plums 
3-5 days
1 year
Radishes 
1 week -
Grapes 
5 days
-
Rhubarb
4 days
1 year
Tomatoes 
1 week 1 year

Dairy product storage chart

  Refrigerator
4°C
Freezer
-18 °C
Salted butter (after opening) 3 weeks
1 year
Fresh cream (after opening)
3-5 days
1 month
Ice cream 
- 3 months

Firm cheese (cheddar, mozzarella, etc.)

5 weeks
6 months

Soft cheese (brie, camembert, etc.) 

3-4 weeks
-
Blue cheese (after opening)
1 week
-
Fresh cheese (cottage, ricotta)
3-5 days
-
Cheese spread
3-4 weeks
-
Milk (after opening)
3-5 days
6 weeks

Storage chart for condiments and other food

  Refrigerator
4°C
Freezer
-18 °C
Room
temperature
20 °C
First-press vegetable oil (after opening)
3-4 weeks -
-
Ketchup and pickled food 
1 year -
-
Mayonnaise 
2 months -
-
Prepared mustard (ordinary)
1 year -
-
Prepared mustard (strong)
9 months -
-
Fresh herbs 
4 days 1 year -
Peanut butter (after opening)
- -
2 months
Jam and jelly
- - 1 year
Dried herbs
- - 1 year
Molasses
- - 2 years
Honey 
- - 18 months
Dried mustard
- - 3 years
Maple syrup, corn syrup 
- - 1 year
Sugar 
-
- 2 years
Vinegar 
- - 2 years
Dried breadcrumbs 
- - 3 months
White flour 
- - 2 years
Corn flour 
- - 6 months
Dried fruit
- - 1 year
Vegetable oil
- - 1 year
Dried yeast 
- - 1 year
Baking powder
- - 1 year
Baking soda
- - 1 year
Granola-style cereal 
- - 6 months
Ready-to-serve cereal 
- - 8 months
Rolled oats 
- - 6-10 months
Dried pasta 
- - 1 year
Dried egg pasta 
- - 6 months
White rice 
- - 1 year
Semolina  
- - 1 year
Source : Ministère de l’Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l’Alimentation du Québec, [en ligne], http://www.mapaq.gouv.qc.ca/fr/publications/thermoguide.pdf (consulté le 08/09/2015).