Do Breast Milk Storage Bags Expire? The Answer You Need to Know

  • By: Sandra
  • Date: August 13, 2022
  • Time to read: 6 min.

If you are a new mom, you may be wondering if milk storage bags expire. The answer to this question is yes – they do expire.

However, the expiration date will vary depending on the brand of bag that you use.

We look at the expiration dates for different brands of milk storage bags, as well as how to store your milk properly so that it stays fresh for as long as possible.

Storing expressed milk in storage bags is a great way to keep your little one fed while you are away from home, but how long do they last and are they necessary?

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Do breast milk storage bags really expire?

Unopened breastmilk storage bags, in general, do not expire.

Unused milk storage bags, according to experts, should survive eternally if maintained in a dry closet that is not exposed to moisture of any type.

An airtight container is ideal for keeping the bags cool and dry.

Why should I buy Breastmilk Storage Bags?

Breastmilk storage bags make it easy to store milk in the fridge or freezer. They are also leak-proof, which helps to prevent freezer burn. They provide safe storage for human milk.

The ready-to-use Breast Milk Storage Bags make storing, transferring, and warming your breast milk easy and sanitary.

The bags are freezer-proof with double zipper protection to prevent leaking and take up less room than bottles.

The bags’ flat design guarantees that milk thaws fast, and the sturdy material is safe for freezer storage.

The heat-sealed seams on the food-grade, BPA-free bags keep them from ripping, splitting, or breaking. Every bag includes huge labeling and a date area.

Why should I buy Breastmilk Storage Bags

How to choose milk storage bags?

Ideally, you want one that is practical, can go with your pump easily, has plenty of space for writing important details on, is food standard and is BPA free.

Ones that can stand up on their own are also very useful so look for ones with a base in.

Are milk storage bags necessary?

If you want to store breast milk then yes having bags is the best way to do this, especially if you want to pop the milk in the freezer.

Breast milk storage bags are a must-have item for every parent searching for a simple way to store, freeze, reheat, and feed breast milk to their child.

They are BPA and BPS free, and they come pre-sterilized, so you may use the breast milk storage bags right away. Breast milk bags may be simply re-sterilized and reused, saving you both time and money.

Can I just use cheap plastic bags to store breast milk?

If you are going to freeze breast milk it is vital that you only use safe, quality bags to do so. Also, most cheap plastic bags will not be sterile and not safe to freeze breast milk as they can introduce bacteria to your bag.

The benefit of using specially designed breast milk bags are they are already sterilised. They often have attachments that fit your breast pumps and make transfers easy.

Once your expressed breast milk is at the ideal temperature (you need cold breast milk) you can freeze them.

Plastic bags may not be food-grade quality and may not be BPA Free. It is important to only use food-grade quality bags because of the need for safe long-term storage of the milk without losing any of the vital nutrients and vitamins it contains.

Cheap plastic bags which are not food grade quality may leach unknown toxins into your milk which may not be safe for your baby.

Also, Breast milk storage bags are designed to stand upright for simple handling which cheap plastic bags do not.

Can I store my breast milk in Ziploc bags?

Cheap ziplock bags may not be sterilised and so can harbour bacteria, however, many people do opt to use them.

It is important to ensure that they are food-grade quality, and if you do use them, make sure to label the contents and date milk.

Disposable plastic nurser bags or bottle liners should not be used to store expressed breast milk. They are less resilient, prone to bursting or ripping, are not intended for freezer usage, and are not intended for long-term storage.

Never store breastmilk in plastic sandwich bags or disposable bottle liners.

How long will breast milk stay fresh in a storage bag?

Milk bags can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days and in the freezer for up to 6 months if stored in a position where they will not rip or break.

Special precautions must be taken while utilizing milk storage bags to keep the milk fresh. You might use one of the finest breastmilk coolers or follow these steps:

  • Because the pouches have already been sanitized, you may use them right away.
  • If you keep the bags in the freezer door, the temperature will drop every time you open the door.
  • To make it easier to find the proper bag, organize the bags by date or volume with the oldest closest to the front.
  • Fill bottles with them as needed for feeding.

How Long Can I Keep Breastmilk?

You can save newly extracted breast milk in the following ways:

  • 6–8 hours at room temperature (no more than 25oC),
  • Refrigerate for up to 72 hours (4oC or below) (in the rear where it’s coldest).
  • for 2 weeks in the frozen section of your refrigerator (-15oC or below),
  • up to 3 months in a separate freezer compartment (-18oC or below),
  • or up to 12 months in a deep freeze at -20oC.
How Long Can I Keep Breastmilk

How to dispose of milk storage bags?

If you have excess unused bags they can be used for many other items if you are no longer nursing and no long have freshly expressed breast milk.

If you don’t want to use them for frozen milk you can also use them for freezing any liquids like stock, soup, or pureed baby food. Or for freezing any food as they are food-grade quality and safe for all foods.

They can even be used to make frozen ice packs for lunches etc!

Used bags, like the Lansinoh Breastmilk Storage Bags are made entirely of virgin plastic and do not include any plasticizers. The Lansinoh Breastmilk Storage Bags are compostable.

They come into the fourth recyclable category, which also comprises bags, retail bags, medicinal packaging, and so on.

Can I reuse my milk storage bags?

Whilst we are beginning to see reusable storage bags enter the market most like lansinoh breastmilk storage bags are not reusable and cannot be used for a second time.

If you buy reusable bags these are not sterilized and you will need to sterilize them each time you plan on using them.

We do love these reusable bags from haakaa, ideal for those wishing to cut down on single use plastic.

Do Lansinoh storage bags expire?

Breast milk bags that have not been used have no expiration date. The general guideline is to maintain them in a cold, dry place.

Keep them free from any moisture or wetness. An airtight container is an excellent technique to prevent germs and moisture from accumulating on abandoned bags.

Do Medela Pump and Save bags expire?

The good news is that Medela Pump and Save bags do not have an expiration date. Because they are pre-sterilized, you may use them right away without having to wash them.

They are intended for one-time usage only and should be discarded after use.

Can you reuse a bottle of breastmilk?

If you have leftover milk from one feed either in a milk storage bag or in a bottle you can offer it at the next feed as long as it has not been left out in hot conditions where it may sour.

Cold milk can be safe for up to six hours. Avoid adding warm milk to the cold milk. You can leave it a room temperature for up to four hours.

It’s best not to reheat breast milk that has already been heated as human milk expressed at different temperatures can have varying effects.

If you are going to feed the baby expressed milk that has been stored in the fridge, take it out and let it come to room temperature before feeding.

Room-temperature milk will feel lukewarm to the touch. If you’re using frozen milk, thaw it by placing it in the refrigerator overnight.

You can also warm frozen milk by placing it in a saucepan of water over low heat or placing the sealed bag in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes.

Be careful not to overheat the milk, which can destroy some of its important nutrients.