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Storage for 50 lbs of flour other bulk items

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I am re organizing my pantry and one think that I just despise is this huge bulky bag of flour. It takes up too much space, its messy, etc.

Suggestions for (on the cheap end) storage containers for 50 lbs of flour. I thought about some smaller plastic totes but are they food safe and are they air tight?
post #2 of 14
They are air tight. I'm not sure how you'd check for food-safe. Maybe one of those lead-testing kits? Since you wouldn't be heating the container, leaded plastic would be the main safety issue. You could always store the bag of flour in the tote and use it to refill a smaller container in your pantry (such as one of those lock&lock-style containers). That's what we do with the 25lb bags of rice.
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
I don't think a tote to fit the bag of flour would fit in the space I have for it. Right now I kind of squish, fold, bend the bag of flour to make it fit.

Anyone know is #5 plastic okay for food storage if I am not heating it? I found a container in the garage with a good lid and its a #5. Also if it has stored other non food items should I not use it for food. I was thinking to give it a good scrubbing and then use it. Nothing bad has been in it just miscellaneous stuff, clothes, etc.
post #4 of 14
how about a big wooden chest kept in a cool dry place?
post #5 of 14
We use food grade buckets and gamma seal lids, but the lids can get pricey but they are sooo worth it! Super easy to open and close and air tight.

If you're looking for cheap food grade buckets try some local restaurants, etc. I know our local Firehouse Subs restaurant sells their 5 gallon pickle buckets for $2 each....we use those for all sorts of things.
post #6 of 14
I don't recall the food-grade plastics off the top of my head. You can check your food containers, though, like cottage cheese and yogurt, etc.

Personally, I only like to re-use food items for food and non-food items for non-food. However, a good scrubbing and airing out should be good as long as nothing chemically or "icky" (health-wise) was in the container in the past.
post #7 of 14
i had an OH! moment last night thinking about this...what about a large metal garbage can (new of course) lined with a flour sack or something like that?
i have always wanted to have one for food storage, but never had a place to put one, but if you had the space, it would even look kind of nice i think. i have seen something like it, but nicer than ones at hardware stores at IKEA
post #8 of 14
I go to the grocery store and get the frosting buckets from the bakery area. They just give them away for free, but you'll have to ask. They buckets are like 4 gallon and come with a super tight lid and are of course food grade plastic.

Can also try a deli place that might get big buckets of pickles or what not.

Clean them well, I keep my food still in the bag it came in and just put the whole bag into the bucket, but you could also line the bucket with some fabric or something of the like.

The frosting buckets come clean, no smell, not certain about pickle buckets as I have never used one of them.
post #9 of 14
Originally Posted by Denvergirlie View Post
The frosting buckets come clean, no smell, not certain about pickle buckets as I have never used one of them.
The pickle buckets definitely smell of pickle. I kept forgetting about having the pickle buckets and was wondering why our shed was smelling strongly of garlic. LOL Of course we hadn't washed them out well after getting them.
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone. I called around grocery stores yesterday looking for buckets and everyone says you just have to come in every few days and see if they have any. I guess they go quickly. With only one car this is going to be tricky.

All of our plastic food containers are a #5 which is what the storage totes I have are. Seems like it would be okay but for some reason I am hesitant. Its not like we are cooking in them or anything. We are slowly purging the plastic though.

I called a restaurant supply place yesterday and the lady said she did not even know what food safe plastic was!!! Then she was really snotty to me. Wow won't be going there thats for sure.
post #11 of 14

Don't assume any plastic is food grade unless it's sold as food grade. But you can line it with a food grade plastic bag.
post #12 of 14
Check more places than your grocery. My local grocery and Costco gets everything in bags in cardboard boxes. But my donut shop? Gets things in 3-5 gallon buckets that they sell for $2/pop. Food's already been shipped in it, so definitely food safe.

Or my local Bosch shop carries food safe buckets and gamma-seal lids. I also saw food safe buckets at Winco last time I was there - $5-$6 for each bucket/lid set if I remember right.

It'd be great to be able to store things like that in glass, but could you imagine the mess if one of the kids made a 5-gallon glass jar explode? *shudder* And stainless steel is just expensive. Might be able to find something somewhere though, but I pretty much guarantee it wouldn't be cheap.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
I had the car today so went out to look for buckets. Stopped at 5 bakeries, 3 restaurants, and 2 hardware stores and nothing! I was just making a loop. Well we were passing Walmart and I though why not at least try. Their bakery had some and only $1 for the large and 2/$1 for the small. The lids have the seals too. I never shop there but we were getting close to home and I am glad I stopped. The checkout lady was amazed they had them. And started talking about how she is going to go do this now and what a great idea it was.
post #14 of 14
found 6 of the 5 gallon buckets with rubber seal lids for 2 dollars a piece at the local bakery. They had many more.
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