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Vacuum sealer, hops storage

My LHBS usually sells hops in 2oz bags and when I don’t use them all it hurts my soul to throw the excess away. I have been reading that vacuum sealing and freezing them might be the way to go. Before I drop the $$$$ on a good vacuum sealer I was wondering if this works and if so, how long do vacuum sealed frozen hops stay good? Anyone have an opinion?
Thanks.
T

I bought a FoodSaver unit 20 or more years ago and it was money well spent. Besides the money saved on food waste, I’ve started using it for freezer hop storage right off the bat. I buy my hops in bulk and store them in the oxygen barrier vacuum bags for 8 months to a year with no discernable loss of quality.

Get a vacuum sealer. You won’t regret it.

My vacuum sealer gave up. I just put them in mason jars and into the freezer. For the small size you are talking, get the pint size jars. 1lb usually fits in a quart jar.

My experience with the Food Saver brand is that they are very affordable, but they do tend to lose suction after a few years. Usually, you can find deals on the basic one (without a bag cutter) for around $20-30 IIRC.

There is a German brand called Caso that makes great vacuum sealers. I’ve been using that one for some time.

In any event, they are a great pickup. I use mine mainly for hops and food (both raw and cooked). I’ve been buying hops by the pound for the last few years and haven’t looked back. You can just measure out the hops you need for a particular batch and seal up the rest, stick them back in the freezer.

I would probably just use small jars if you’re only keeping 1-2 oz around. I usually buy 5-7 pounds of hops a year so the vacuum sealer has paid for itself, you can get one for ~ $50 at Walmart.

Thanks for the advice, just ordered a foodsaver sealer.

+1 to the food saver. It’s also good for food too

The Foodsaver is great. We’ve had two in 19 yrs.

I’m more concerned that you were throwing excess hops away. :shock: Squeeze the air out of a Ziploc bag and put it in the freezer.

[quote=“mrv”]The Foodsaver is great. We’ve had two in 19 yrs.

I’m more concerned that you were throwing excess hops away. :shock: Squeeze the air out of a Ziploc bag and put it in the freezer.[/quote]

hop tea also supposedly is a great sleep aid. But apparently you have really bizarre dreams.

I bought mine off of Craigslist for 20 bucks. Buying hops by the lb and freezing them works great.

I love my Foodsaver for hops, bulk food purchases and big meal leftovers.

To me It’s worth every penny spent on buying one and every penny saved on using it to my advantage. I think by now it has paid for itself and then some.

I love the FoodSaver. That along with Hopsdirect sales. When you get a 1lb of hops for under $10 even if you don’t use them all, it’s still good value. Only issue is that the FoodSaver bags are pricey.

The bags are somewhat pricey, but since they are also re-usable, I find that a roll goes a pretty long way. As long as you remember to form the bags larger than you need for a given task, they are even re-usable multiple times.

[quote=“The Professor”]
The bags are somewhat pricey, but since they are also re-usable, I find that a roll goes a pretty long way. As long as you remember to form the bags larger than you need for a given task, they are even re-usable multiple times.[/quote]
I’ve also found this works very well. Use one very large bag to seal all unused hops together. Cut open and remove just what you need, then reseal.

If you are Costco member, watch for the coupon mailer. They often have a coupon for a box that contains several rolls of material for making bags.

[quote=“Pietro”][quote=“mrv”]The Foodsaver is great. We’ve had two in 19 yrs.

I’m more concerned that you were throwing excess hops away. :shock: Squeeze the air out of a Ziploc bag and put it in the freezer.[/quote]

hop tea also supposedly is a great sleep aid. But apparently you have really bizarre dreams.[/quote]

:?:

[quote=“Pietro”]
hop tea also supposedly is a great sleep aid.[/quote]I like my hop tea with a little fermented barley juice, makes me sleep really good too.

Got my vacuum sealer and it rocks. I am vacuum sealing everything.

I’ve been sealing my excess hops with a vacuum sealer, too, but just was listening to an older episode of Brew Strong in which Jamil and John discuss storing hops in the freezer without any special packaging past a ziplock bag. Jamil, in particular, seemed to believe that the cold environment slowed down the hop degradation to the point that nothing else was needed. Said he stores hops for years this way.

It’s making me rethink the time and money I spend vacuum-sealing my hops. If anyone wants, I’ll be happy to dig up the episode date and time stamp of the conversation.

Depends how long the storage is.
I’d worry about freezer burn. So I disagree with Jamil & John.

Vacuum sealed bags are definitely the way to go…the sealer units are a LOT less expensive than when I bought my FoodSaver unit 20+years ago.

Better safe than sorry, I say.

+1 food saver. Great choice, I’ve had hops last past 9 months with mine.

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