View Full Version : Storage of Frozen Breastmilk

02-04-2002, 05:20 PM
I have alot of frozen breastmilk stored for my now 10 month old daughter. The oldest is 4 months old and the most recent is 1 day old. The 4 month old milk seems to smell slightly sour when thawed -- not as bad as spoiled or sour cow's milk, but not like "fresh" breastmilk. We tasted it and it didn't taste as bad as sour cow's milk, but didn't taste good either. I am wondering what experience others have had with storage of milk. We are storing in the freezer section of our primary fridge (which we try not to open very often to keep the temp cooler and constant). We are using the Gerber storage bags (I never ran into this prob with my first child when I was using the Medela bags, but I don't think we ever stored for 3 or 4 months then either. Thanks for you help.

02-04-2002, 07:17 PM
If it smells bad, I'd throw it out. You might want to thaw a little out that isn't quite that old and see how it compares so that you know exactly what's good and what isn't.

Also, if your freezer is a frost-free one, then be VERY careful to keep the milk away from the freezer walls as they are warmer than freezing and will allow the milk to constantly thaw and refreeze.

Once a bag of milk is frozen, I put it in big ziploc bag to protect it from freezer burn, and when the big bag is full I move it to the chest freezer where it will keep longer.

I also use Gerber bags and haven't had any problems with them.

02-04-2002, 10:05 PM
I have no experience freezing breast milk (yet), but I can tell you that I've stopped using freezer bags to freeze food in general. I can't get it to keep a few weeks without freezer burn, and I've tried several varieties of bags (I've also had friends and family make the same remark). I've started wrapping everything in freezer paper, and it does much better. I am guessing if freezer bags aren't keeping meat well, they aren't keeping breast milk well. I bought Avent storage bottles because of this - figured my best shot at keeping my breast milk fresh is to have the thickness and hardness of a bottle, not a bag.

Anyway, I have the Mayo Clinic Guide Preg-1st Year and it says you can freeze breastmilk up to 6m. I also read in another BF'ing guide that freezing over a few weeks requires a sub-zero freezer (which most of us don't have).

I agree with the poster above - give it a taste test compared to a few days old milk. If it tastes different, then throw it out.

Good luck!

02-09-2002, 01:06 AM
Hi there,
I have stored and used breast milk up to the 6-month recommendation with no problems. I use the Gerber bags and store them either in my fridge freezer (complete separate insulated door) or more often, in my chest freezer in the basement.

Prior to expressing/freezing, I had read in some of the pregnancy books that the thawed milk would likely be exactly as you described "slightly sour, but not spoiled smelling - definitely different than fresh" and that this was nothing to worry about. So I never did. :)