Wheat germ is the heart of the wheat kernel, and contains several beneficial nutrients such as vitamin E, folate, phosphorus, thiamine and zinc. Wheat germ also contains healthy polyunsaturated fats and oils, which make proper wheat germ storage essential. If not stored correctly and left at room temperature, the oils inside wheat germ can quickly become rancid and sour. Wheat germ is available commercially either toasted or raw, and both varieties require immediate cold storage to preserve freshness once the original packaging has been opened.
Place the desired amount of wheat germ in a glass or plastic container with an airtight lid. Ensure the lid fits properly to prevent air and moisture from entering the container. Run your finger around the top of the lid to make sure it seals tightly.
Repeat with remaining wheat germ and storage containers. Ensure that all wheat germ which is not going to be used right away has been placed in storage containers, and not left in the original packaging.
Label the storage containers with the date of storage, and the expiration date, which is two weeks from the storage date. Place the container in the refrigerator on the middle or top shelf.
Place one cup of wheat germ, or the desired amount, into a quart-size freezer bag. Fold the bag in half and press out the extra air, then seal the bag.
Repeat with the remaining wheat germ and bags. Ensure that all the wheat germ which is not going to be used immediately has been placed into storage bags.
Label bags of wheat germ with the storage date for reference. Place the bags in the freezer.
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- Plastic freezer containers may be used in place of freezer bags if desired.
- Raw wheat germ is extremely sensitive to spoilage. Once the original wheat germ packaging has been opened, immediately prepare raw wheat germ for freezing or refrigeration and place in cold storage.
- Wheat germ lasts about two weeks in a refrigerator and about two months in the freezer.
- Place wheat germ in an area of the refrigerator or freezer which is most likely to remain consistently cold, such as the middle rack, or lower freezer shelf.
Elizabeth Otto has been writing professionally since 2003. She is a licensed emergency medical technician-intermediate with over 10 years of experience in the field. She has worked as a clinical assistant in family health and emergency medicine since 1995. Otto is a freelance writer for various websites and holds an Associate of Science in medical assisting from Commonwealth College.