Do Old Popcorn Kernels Not Pop?

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“Do old popcorn kernels not pop?” is an all-too-common question, especially for those who are used to buying popcorn kernels in bulk. After all, there can be disruptions to supply chains and when these disruptions take place, distributors and theaters like to know that they can simply use the kernels that they have on hand. That’s understandable enough, of course.

When these clients make bulk purchases from Shumway Farms, they want to know about the shelf life of these goods. They enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing that they are sourcing their kernels from a high-quality company that offers the best flavor and longer shelf life.

The time has come to take a closer look at old popcorn kernels, in order to find out more about their level of usefulness.

Assessing Each Type of Popcorn

Each type of popcorn is obviously going to age differently from a shelf-life standpoint. If the popcorn has already been popped? This snack will have the shortest shelf life of all. This form of popcorn can only last two to three weeks once it has been made, which is more impressive than anyone could have reasonably expected.

On the other hand, microwave popcorn kernels last anywhere from six to eight months, which is why so many will rely on this snack to keep their pantry full. Meanwhile, un-popped popcorn kernels are able to remain usable indefinitely. This is a major boon to all of the bulk buyers out there who are worried about using un-popped kernels after the date that was printed on the packaging.

Luckily, this is not a concern at all and the un-popped kernels can still be used anyway. There are also ways to extend the shelf life of un-popped kernels even further, ensuring that they remain fresh. The following is a guide to proper storage:

The Best Way To Store Popcorn Kernels

If the original container is not available or the container for the kernels is not air tight, this is a sign that they need to be stored differently. A cool, dark location is considered the best-case scenario in these instances. The popcorn kernels need to be kept away from any device that produces heat as well. There are other precautions to be taken, too.

For example, some may believe that the fridge or freezer is the best place to store the un-popped kernels, but nothing could be further from the truth. The shelf life of the kernels will be shortened in these settings because they are more likely to become dried out. This practice should always be avoided at all costs.

What If The Kernels Have Already Gone Bad?

Despite the best-laid plans, popcorn kernels may go bad from time to time. Fortunately, there are some telltale signs for all those who are looking to avoid these spoiled kernels. The coloration of the kernels in question is typically a major giveaway. The color is darker once the kernel has started to spoil but damage and mold will cause gray and black spots to appear. Once they have become visible, it is a sign to move on and throw the kernels in question away.

The answer lies with the kernels themselves. The 1/3 cup of un-popped kernels is going to have more calories because more kernels are present. Plus, popcorn serves as a healthy snack for those who are not using unhealthy additives. The more oil, butter and salt that is added to the popcorn, the less healthy it becomes. The same goes for those who are adding sugar, as popcorn does not typically cause any spikes to the person’s blood sugar.

In other instances, the kernels may not appear to have gone bad until they have been popped. An uneven popping cycle is a sure sign that the kernels in question have seen better days. For example, a batch of kernels that have started to go bad will even pop unevenly. To avoid these types of issues, it is best not to store old kernels and new kernels in the same place.

There is one last test that can take place if there are still questions about the quality of the kernels. By taking a fingernail and attempting to dent the kernel, it is easy to tell whether they are able to be used.

A popcorn kernel should not be able to be dented by a fingernail, so if this is the case? This is a sure sign that the kernels are not fit to be popped any longer.

Contact Shumway Popcorn to secure your order now.

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