- How long do frozen smelts last? The precise answer to that question depends to a large extent on storage conditions - keep smelts frozen at all times.
Properly stored, frozen smelts will maintain best quality for about 9 months in the freezer, although they will usually remain safe to eat after that.
Are frozen smelts safe to eat after the ‘expiration’ date on the package? Yes, if properly stored - commercially frozen smelts will typically carry a Best By, Best if Used By, Best Before, or Best When Used By date but this is not a safety date, it is the manufacturer's estimate of how long the frozen smelts will remain at peak quality.
How long will frozen smelts remain safe to eat? Frozen smelts that have been kept constantly frozen at 0°F will keep safe indefinitely, as long as they have been stored properly and the package is not damaged.
How to tell if frozen smelts are no longer good? If dry spots or discolorations have developed on the frozen smelts, freezer burn has begun to set in - this will not make the frozen smelts unsafe to eat, but it will harm the texture and taste.
Sources: For details about data sources used for food storage information, please click here