Print Topic - Archive

BTD Forums  /  SWAMI Xpress  /  Frozen vegetable question.......
Posted by: JJR, Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 10:54pm
OK, maybe we shouldn't be and maybe it's not a big deal, but I do use a lot of frozen veggies.  However, as of late, we are finding it very difficult to find the ones we buy in a bag that doesn't have some kind of puncture or hole in it.  Now, I'm trying not to be overly anal about it and it's possible that I'm just noticing it now.  And it may be it has always been like that and it never made a difference in quality.  

But it does beg the question, should I be trusting veggies that are in a bag that is not completely airtight?  I would think it would lose some freshness and might cause freezer burn.  

However, maybe it wouldn't.  Most holes aren't very large.  Every once in a while they'll be kind of big.  I started noticing it with a company we use called peapod that delivers to your door.  I've noticed it more with them than when we go and buy them ourselves.  I've called and complained and I think I'm going to start looking for other sources.  But, my wife and I have both noticed it's very difficult to find them that aren't punctured with some kind of little hole somewhere.  Now, if you get those "steamers", those bags are airtight.  They are designed to allow you to microwave in the bag.  Which of course I wouldn't even think of doing.  But those are more expensive due to the packaging.  But that also begs the question, I wonder if those are going to be more fresh because the bags are so bulletproof.  Of course then there is the whole, more plastic in the landfill from using such a robust bag.  

Now, I suppose the overlooming question is it a bad idea to be eating frozen veggies.  I actually like them and find it easy to cook with, especially if you're in a hurry.  I've also read that frozen isn't really all that bad because they flash freeze it right away and it does lock in some of the freshness.  And of course it's hard to always get fresh stuff, unless it's summer time at your farmers market.  You know?


What says the people?  Thank you for your input!!!
Posted by: ruthiegirl, Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 11:51pm; Reply: 1
I use frozen veggies because they're cheap and convenient, and I don't have to worry about them spoiling before we eat them, which sometimes happens with fresh if I'm not careful.

Maybe get some frozen veggies in boxes instead of bags if they keep coming punctured from peapod? I find the boxes less convenient, though they do take up less space in the freezer and are fine to use if I'm using the whole box at once in a recipe. I've never seen those boxes get damaged from "rough treatment" anywhere in handling, while the bags do sometimes get little holes. Since most of those holes are aquired in my own car or freezer, I've never worried about them.
Posted by: JJR, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 12:21am; Reply: 2
So if you get holes in them in your own freezer, do you toss them or not fret?  I ate some carrots last night and they seemed fine, but there was a tiny hole in it.  But I got a shipment today from peapod and every stinking bag had multiple holes in it.  I was miffed.  One of them had a pretty large hole in it.
Posted by: Possum, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 12:32am; Reply: 3
I noticed that the frozen berries I got had deliberate holes in the bags...The blurb on the back explained why, but I have since thrown that out... ??) Could these holes be deliberate too :-/
One thing to watch with any frozen vegies is the sulphites that are sometimes used, but that is also used at times on fresh vegies too... :-/
Posted by: Serenity, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 1:29am; Reply: 4
I thought the little holes were deliberate so they didn't take up as much room in the shop freezers and to prevent them popping if too many were stacked on top.   If you don't eat the whole amount wouldn't that be letting air in anyway?  :o
I freeze excess homegrown fruit & veggies for winter soups as it is hard to find a wide variety of frozen organic produce here.  I open the bags numerous times to take the amount i need for one meal out & put the rest straight back into the freezer, i have never noticed a loss of taste or change in texture but of course i can't check for nutrient changes.
Who knows how long "fresh" fruit & veg have been in transit or in cold storage for without being in an air tight bag??  The only way to know is to grow your own (but not always possible) :)
Posted by: Chloe, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 1:37am; Reply: 5
I have no problem buying frozen vegetables and fruits. It insures I always have a freezer full
of options..... I think frozen produce is often fresher than produce that sits out for many days in a market. I mostly buy organic...haven't noticed holes in any of my bags....I was rather surprised to even read that others have seen holes.

Are these specific brands that are problematic?  You can always write to the manufacturers and ask them about these holes.

Is this a shipping issue, do you think?  Or purposely manufactured bags so they decompose
easily and don't spend forever sitting in landfills.  Wonder if these bags are environmentally more sound than bags used in the past.
Posted by: ABJoe, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 2:43am; Reply: 6
I also use frozen vegetables for convenience and cost...  I haven't seen holes in the bags I buy.  Holes in the bags would allow moisture loss, which will enhance freezer burn if the vegetables are stored for very long.
Posted by: deblynn3, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 4:23am; Reply: 7
I wouldn't buy them if there are holes that weren't intended to be there.  Once I open a bag I put that bag in another ziploc freezer bag. I reuse my own until it develops a hole. In fact I might have several kinds of sacks in one bag makes it easier for me as I usually mix several types together.
Posted by: JJR, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 5:24pm; Reply: 8
The bags I've been noticing don't have "purposeful" holes in them.  They are holes from being handled.  They are random, look like pricks from something somewhat sharp, or if enough pressure was put on them next to something like a box edge or something.  I don't think they're supposed to be there.

I'm leaning with the others that it's probably not a good idea and yeah, freezer burn sounds like it could be a problem.  When I open mine up and don't use it all, I put them in a freezer ziploc bag.  Call me anal.

It does beg the question though, if regular veggies aren't airtight, why would frozen have to be?  I see what you're saying Joe, that it's possible to lose some moisture and promote freezer burn.  I guess that's reason enough.  I do think the carrots I ate the other night were a little freezer burned.  This is all very irritating because it's with both companies that I typically buy.  The only upside is I found some other types that don't seem to have the same problem.  I ate some brussel sprouts last night from a package that wasn't perforated from a different supplier and my mind was saying they tasted better.  Hehehhehe.  I don't know if it was completely true or not though.


Then the other question is:  Do I eat up the rest of the bags that have holes or just toss and start all over????  I'm inclined to think even the holy bagged ones won't be detrimental, as I think I've probably had them before without noticing.  But I'm not really sure.
Posted by: Spring, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 6:12pm; Reply: 9
Just make up a pot of soup, JJR, and you won't know the difference!
Posted by: ruthiegirl, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 6:22pm; Reply: 10
If the holes came from my own handling, then I know they're "new holes" and I eat them up without concern. If I'm worried at all, I simply make sure to use the "open" bags first. I only repackage them in my own ziplock bag if the hole is so big that I'm afraid of the food falling out and creating a mess. I use clips to reclose bags if I open it up and only use a portion of it.

I also have a big family and a small freezer. Typically, frozen veggies are used within 2 weeks, though I've had no problems with bags of things "forgotten" at the bottom of my freezer that are several months old. Even when they're freezer-burnt, they simply "don't taste as good anymore" but aren't harmful to eat. I can't say the same for moldy produce in my fridge!

The only time I've actually thrown out frozen veggies is if they've been forgotten about for almost a year and are clearly, visibly, freezer-burnt. This is much mroe common with things I've frozen myself (say, over-ripe bananas) than packages of things originally bought frozen.

I'd advise you to use up the "less than perfect" bags of frozen veggies currently in your freezer, but maybe look to buy them elsewhere in the future. If you do buy them from peapod, the boxed veggies (or the ones in the microwavable bags you mentioned) might be a better choice. It really depends on whether or not it's too much for you to actually go to the store and buy the frozen veggies yourself, or if the grocery delivery service is essential to making your household run stress-free.
Posted by: Victoria, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 8:01pm; Reply: 11
Quoted from ruthiegirl

I'd advise you to use up the "less than perfect" bags of frozen veggies currently in your freezer, but maybe look to buy them elsewhere in the future. If you do buy them from peapod, the boxed veggies (or the ones in the microwavable bags you mentioned) might be a better choice. It really depends on whether or not it's too much for you to actually go to the store and buy the frozen veggies yourself, or if the grocery delivery service is essential to making your household run stress-free.


I agree.  I'd use them up and then change brands, unless you are unable to get to the store and shop.
Posted by: JJR, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 8:48pm; Reply: 12
Thanks for the advice.  That's probably what I'll do is just eat them up and change over time.  We use the delivery service AND go grocery shopping.  But we've noticed it at BOTH places.  The delivery service just really sent a batch yesterday that were more full of holes than I've ever noticed.  But, after doing some research, they have the steamable bag stuff also, and other options, so I might just start doing that.  They're more expensive and that's the downside.  At the grocery stores we go to, there are other brands we can try.  We've just been sticking with this one brand due to price, and I think it might be time to make a change.  

What really stinks is that it just always feels like you get the shaft.  The cheaper brands are the ones that are "holy".  Hehehhehee.  I guess there's a reason they are cheaper.  Ugh.
Posted by: Possum, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 9:07pm; Reply: 13
If it were me in this situation, I would be contacting the company involved - they rely on customer feedback to give good service... They may/should compensate you for being dissatisfied, especially as they are at risk of losing not only your custom, but the many people you talk to re this issue??!!:-/
Posted by: deblynn3, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 9:16pm; Reply: 14
You should say something to the store manager/owner.  They should check to see if it is their personal or the suppliers.  I'd tell them you're how you plan to solve the problem. (different brand, store, delivery service)  If the delivery service delivered them you need to check and have them returned.  You don't have to except food that has been mishandled. Make sure your refusal to take the goods is noted and your money is refunded.  If your nice about it, "sorry, but no thanks"  They will do something. This sounds like a stocker or handler problem the store managers need to know.
Posted by: Spring, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 9:29pm; Reply: 15
Good advice, Deblynn3. I got a product the other day that was unsealed about an inch and it was pouring out into the bag when I got it home. The store replaced it. If we don't report this sort of thing, it is only going to get worse.
Posted by: deblynn3, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 9:34pm; Reply: 16
I've run stores. (although not food)  A problem can't be fixed if the person is fixes it doesn't know.
The check out person can't do anything and by the end of the day just wants to go home. If sales are lost, the manager's job is on the line. I don't have delivery, so I'd first talk to the freezer dept. manager. If I don't see results I'd go to the head of the food department, after that I'd change stores.
Posted by: geminisue, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 9:42pm; Reply: 17
Why haven't you returned them to the store, and let them know about it, I'm sure they would give you your money back but more important, did someone add something to them, or did some little mouse, make the hole, (maybe one is scurrying around when the place is quiet.  I know you would think it would freeze, but maybe there is an exit they/it has found.
Posted by: Victoria, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 9:50pm; Reply: 18
Communication with the companies that we purchase food from is so important!  I'm a strong advocate in giving feedback (both positive and negative) to those companies/stores that I regularly give my money to.  And in my experience, it does make a difference.
Posted by: JJR, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 10:00pm; Reply: 19
I did contact and get my money back right away with this last shipment.  I complained to the lady over the phone, respectfully and urged her to look into this.  I suppose I could've tried to go over her head, but I left it at that at that point.  

I also contacted both the manufactures or suppliers, although to no avail.  Voice mail.  There's probably not much they can do about it, but you never know, they might rethink they're packaging or process of delivery or something.

I was planning on writing a longer email when I get a minute to Peapod because there were a couple of other issues yesterday and I was stressing about it and it wasn't fun.   Meaning, it's not that much more convenient to use a delivery service if you're having to do "damage assessment" every time you get their shipments.  They had also forgot an item.  And then there was an issue with some meat I got.  It was frustrating.  
Posted by: Chloe, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 11:23pm; Reply: 20
Quoted from JJR
The bags I've been noticing don't have "purposeful" holes in them.  They are holes from being handled.  They are random, look like pricks from something somewhat sharp, or if enough pressure was put on them next to something like a box edge or something.  I don't think they're supposed to be there.

I'm leaning with the others that it's probably not a good idea and yeah, freezer burn sounds like it could be a problem.  When I open mine up and don't use it all, I put them in a freezer ziploc bag.  Call me anal.

It does beg the question though, if regular veggies aren't airtight, why would frozen have to be?  I see what you're saying Joe, that it's possible to lose some moisture and promote freezer burn.  I guess that's reason enough.  I do think the carrots I ate the other night were a little freezer burned.  This is all very irritating because it's with both companies that I typically buy.  The only upside is I found some other types that don't seem to have the same problem.  I ate some brussel sprouts last night from a package that wasn't perforated from a different supplier and my mind was saying they tasted better.  Hehehhehe.  I don't know if it was completely true or not though.


Then the other question is:  Do I eat up the rest of the bags that have holes or just toss and start all over????  I'm inclined to think even the holy bagged ones won't be detrimental, as I think I've probably had them before without noticing.  But I'm not really sure.


I would take bags that I bought with non intended holes back to the store....and say you bought
them like this and want to exchange for bags you are able to inspect that have no holes...Most
stores would not question you buying something defective and would gladly allow you to
replace the foods.  I wouldn't accept bags that were purchased this way....Now that you know,
next time, before purchasing frozen veggies, do a full inspection..But take these bags back
to store and exchange for perfectly packed vegetables.

Posted by: ABJoe, Thursday, February 16, 2012, 11:52pm; Reply: 21
Quoted from JJR
What really stinks is that it just always feels like you get the shaft.  The cheaper brands are the ones that are "holy".  Hehehhehee.  I guess there's a reason they are cheaper.  Ugh.

Cheaper is not an excuse for poor workmanship...  Either they handle them carefully or not...  I don't buy damaged packages because I don't know what may have "intermingled" with my food.  If the damage happened once I took possession, I generally repackage it and use it soon...
Posted by: Victoria, Friday, February 17, 2012, 1:43am; Reply: 22
Stress is expensive.  
Print page generated: Thursday, October 2, 2014, 1:12am