Here’s how long canned meat really lasts on your shelf
Meat and poultry are preserved in the same way as many fruits and vegetables: they are “hermetically sealed” in a “tinned steel can” to keep air out, then “heat treated to destroy microorganisms”. -harmful organisms”. (Going through Direct Sciences). Unlike the pork shoulder in your refrigerator, canned meat can last between two and five years, depending on the USDAand sometimes up to up to 10 years. This is due to both the canning process and the low acid content of the meat. High acid canned foods like tomatoes, lemons and grapes will keep in their cans for a relatively short 18 months.
Aside from expiration dates, outside factors such as high heat and dents can affect the safety of canned foods, so it’s always best to rely on your senses to determine if your canned meat has gone bad. the FDA recommends checking the box for swelling – if you feel a gap between the box and the meat inside or see liquid seeping from the lid, you better ditch it. Do the same if the meat seems cloudy, mushy or sour. Trust your eyes, trust your nose, and trust your intuition. As long as you store your canned meat in a cool, dry place and enjoy it by its best before date, you’re probably safe.