Breast Milk Storage Guidelines for Expressed Breast milk
Safe storage guidelines for expressed breast milk to provide optimal preservation of the unique breast milk constituents, and prevent bacterial contamination.
Good Hygiene Practises
Wash hands carefully before pumping or expressing, and use clean sterilized equipment.
Protect breast milk from sunlight.
Storage Times for Fresh Breastmilk
At room temperature, studies have shown breast milk remains stable for up to 6 hours (25oC and lower), but it is recommended to transfer it too a cool place such as a Fridge within 4 hours.
Breast milk can be stored for 3-5 days in the Fridge (at 4oC or lower) but if the breast milk is not required for immediate use, it should be frozen within 48 hours of expressing.
Breast milk must be frozen within 48 hours of expressing. It can be stored for three months in a front opening freezer. Breast milk can be stored for six months in a deep chest freezer. Store frozen breast milk in sealed breast milk storage containers or breast milk storage bags labelled with the date they were expressed.
When frozen milk is thawed in a Fridge, it may be used for a period of up to 24 hours and then the remainder must be discarded. If the frozen milk is thawed at room temperature, it may be used for up to 4 hours. Never add fresh warm breast milk to milk that is already chilled or frozen.
Breast milk can be stored for up to 24 hours in a chilly cooler bag with an icepack.