Canned food can last a surprisingly long time if stored correctly. The shelf life of canned food is determined by several factors, including the manufacturing process and the type of food that has been canned. According to the US Department of Agriculture, most canned foods will last for 1-5 years when stored properly in a cool, dry place.
The length of time that canned food stays safe to eat depends on how it was processed and packaged. Most canned goods are processed in two ways: high-temperature processing and low-temperature processing.
High-temperature processing involves heating cans to a very high temperature for a short period of time, which kills most bacteria and viruses present in the food. Low-temperature processing involves heating cans to a lower temperature for a longer period of time, which also kills bacteria and viruses but may not be as effective as high-temperature processing.
The type of food is also an important factor in determining how long canned food will last. Fruits and vegetables that are processed with low-temperature techniques can last up to 5 years if stored properly, while meats and fish that are processed with high-temperature techniques can last up to 1 year if stored properly.
Although canned food can have an extended shelf life if stored correctly, it’s important to remember that it doesn’t stay fresh forever. Canned goods should be checked regularly for signs of spoilage or contamination before they are consumed. Bulging cans, leaking containers, dented cans, or cans with bulging lids should all be discarded immediately as they could be contaminated with bacteria or viruses that can make you sick when consumed.
Conclusion: How long does canned food last really? The answer depends on several factors such as the manufacturing process used, the type of food being preserved, and how it is stored. Generally speaking, most canned foods will keep for 1-5 years when properly stored in cool and dry conditions; however, regular inspection is recommended before consumption due to potential spoilage or contamination risks associated with any preserved foods.