Using Food Grade Barrels for Long-Term Storage: Benefits, Tips & More

Chemical Plant, Plastic Storage Drums

Food grade barrels are sturdy, reliable containers that can be used to store a variety of products and materials. With most barrels holding up to 55 gallons of liquid, you’ll have plenty of space for all your long-term storage needs. If you follow these storage tips, the plastic won’t wear down over time, so you can keep precious resources like water safe and secure for years on end. Learn more about how to best use food grade barrels for long-term storage.

Benefits of Using Food Grade Barrels for Long-Term Storage

Before we get into our storage tips, let’s look at what makes food grade barrels the perfect choice for long-term storage.

  • Versatile

You can store just about anything inside a food grade barrel. Usually, they’re made with non-toxic plastic, so you can store food and beverages in these barrels without putting your health at risk. You’ll also have a wide variety of different food grade barrels to choose from, including those made from metal, steel, fiber and plastic. Regardless of what you need to store, you can find the right barrel for your specific needs.

  • Reusable

Once you buy some plastic barrels, you can keep using them for the rest of your life — so long as you keep them in good condition, that is. Keep your barrel in a safe, dry location and you can reuse it for years to come. Just make sure you wash it after each use and you’ll be good to go. You don’t have to worry about buying new storage containers every few years.

  • Durable

You also don’t have to worry about your food grade barrel falling apart after a while. These containers are made with strong, durable materials to make sure your goods can last the test of time. The walls of the barrel are thick and sturdy, so you don’t have to worry about accidentally puncturing the side and putting your goods at risk.

Industrial plastic drums

  • Resistant to Chemicals

The beauty of these barrels is their resistance to chemicals. Most barrels are made with high-density polyethylene, which is the same material used in a range of food and beverage applications like juice and dairy products. You can rest assured that your food and water will be safe to consume for years to come.  

How to Store Items in Food Grade Barrels for Long Periods of Time

Now, let’s move to our food grade barrel storage tips. If you want your containers to last a lifetime, you need to make sure you’re doing everything you can to protect them.

  • Keep Them Out of the Sun

Leaving your barrels out in the sun all day can put your goods at risk. The sun will start to break down the plastic on the barrels, which could leach into whatever you’re storing inside. Too much direct sunlight can also lead to algae growth. It’s best to keep them under an awning or a large plastic tarp, so they’re not exposed to direct sunlight. Look for areas that are cool and dry as you go about storing your barrels for the long haul.

  • Stay Off the Concrete

While it may be tempting to stash your barrels on your porch or in your garage, it’s best to keep these big guys off the concrete. Use a series of wood or plastic pallets to keep them off the ground. You’ll also need to make sure the ground is flat and level.

storage containers for liquids

  • Make Sure They’re Clean

If you plan on reusing your food grade barrels, remember to clean them after each use. But instead of dish soap, use a calcium hypochlorite solution to get rid of any chemicals or residue that may be lingering inside. Fill the barrel with water, mix in just an 1/8 of a teaspoon of your calcium hypochlorite, and then wash it out with water. This is absolutely essential if you plan on eating or drinking whatever you store inside these barrels. Otherwise, you could put your health at risk.

  • Leave Space for Expansion

If you’re storing water in your barrels, give them plenty of space to breathe. The contents may expand or contract over the years, so cramping all your barrels too close together may backfire.

When it comes to long-term storage, you can’t go wrong with food grade barrels. You can keep all kinds of items and materials safe for years to come without putting your health at risk. Keep your goods and precious resources out of harm’s way and start using food grade barrels for long-term storage today.