Storing Expressed Breastmilk
Storing expressed breastmilk correctly is important for ensuring that you don’t waste that liquid gold you worked hard to express. Of course, the most important thing is making sure the milk is safe for your baby to consume. With these tips you can be sure that your milk is safe to drink and that you don’t have to pour any out-of-date milk down the sink.
Storage containers for express milk
You will need to have appropriate storage containers for your expressed milk. You can use bottles, but often this means they are taken out of your pump supplies and you will run out quickly.
There are many breastmilk storage options available. Breastmilk bags are simple to use and easy to store and freeze. There are many types available and they are ready to use once taking them out of the packet. Take a look at the nanobebe breastmilk storage bags for a storage option that can be stacked neatly in the fridge/freezer.
nanobebe Breastmilk Storage Bags and Stacker for convenient breastmilk storage.
Alternatively you can use containers such as EcoPods. The advantage of containers is that the are reusable so will reduce your costs over time. They do need to be cleaned regularly in the same way you clean your breast pumping equipment.
Label your expressed milk
Once you have expressed your milk and put it in a container you need to make sure you label it with the date. You should also include the time if you express more than once a day. This will help you keep track of which is the oldest milk and be helpful if you want to mix two batches together.
It is also helpful to write the number of mills on your label so you know how much milk you have when you go to use it. Remember that as milk freezes it expands so relying on the frozen milk volume is not accurate.
Eco Pods Reusable Breastmilk Storage are convenient to use and help look after the environment too!
Adding expressed breastmilk to another batch
If you want to add two batches of expressed milk together, you need to chill the new batch to the same temperature as the old. Record the date and time of the oldest milk on the label.
How to store freshly expressed breastmilk
You can store fresh breastmilk in the following ways:
for 6-8 hours at 26C or less
for 72 hours (3 days) at the coldest
part of fridge at 4C or less
2 weeks in the freezer compartment of the fridge at -15C
3 months in freezer with separate door at -18C
6-12 months in a deep freeze
Made to Milk Reusable Breastmilk Storage bags are great for the freezer or the fridge.
How to store thawed breastmilk
You can store thawed breastmilk:
- Until the end of the feed
- For 24 hours in the back of the fridge
Thawed breastmilk cannot be refrozen. It must be discarded in accordance with the above times
You may need to transport breastmilk, especially if you are leaving your child with a carer. You will need a cooler bag or esky and at least one solid ice pack. Pack the breastmilk in the cooler bag preferably between two ice packs.
When you arrive at your destination place the milk in the fridge or freezer as appropriate.