Can I re-vacuum-seal meat?
December 31, 2017 7:29 PM   Subscribe

If I have opened a vacuum sealed package of steaks (bought that way from the supermarket), removed two steaks, then put the remaining steaks in a new package and vacuum sealed them - can I rely on the use by date on the original package of steaks? Or will it depend on how long the steaks were out of package before re-sealing?
posted by fever-trees to Food & Drink (4 answers total)
Assuming proper handling while out of the packaging - you didn't leave them sitting around at room temp for hours - yes, you could use the original date. If they were frozen and you thawed them that gets a little bit more complicated as far as spoilage calculus, but beef almost always has a longer tail before it really goes bad than the "use by" date most of the time.
posted by Lyn Never at 7:52 PM on December 31, 2017

No concern whatsoever from me.
posted by sanka at 8:34 PM on December 31, 2017

If they were all unwrapped completely and sitting out in the open for a while, personally I would worry about spoilage and probably use the remaining ones up soonish. I would be concerned about contamination, especially in the scenario ‘open surface > back to moist vacuum environment’.

I would actually worry *less* about non-vacuum-sealed steaks - AFAIK, the surface slowly drying off makes contamination less likely and slows down microorganism growth.

Not a food safety expert here, just a housewife-y guess.

(Slightly disappointed - I thought this would be about seal meat!)
posted by The Toad at 9:11 PM on December 31, 2017 [4 favorites]

I think they'll spoil now the package has been opened, even though you've resealed them. Meat goes off fast in plastic wrapping unless it's sterile, and once you opened the package it became unsterile.

I'd take them out of the packet, keep them in the refrigerator maybe under a paper towel or bowl as cover, and use them soon. Or freeze them, though that loses so much of the "steakiness".
posted by anadem at 9:48 PM on December 31, 2017

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