Whether you pump so your baby has bottles when you're gone, exclusively pump to feed your baby, or are just trying to build up a stash, all moms who pump want the same thing — you want your breast milk to last. There are few things worse than realizing your breast milk spoiled, which is why so many parents wonder how long does breast milk last in the freezer.
There's a lot of conflicting information out there. It seems every breastfeeding mom is told something different by her pediatrician, lactation consultant, or hospital. But when it comes to storage in a freezer, you can't really mess it up too bad. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it really depends on what type of freezer you have.
If you have a fridge that just has a freezer compartment without its own separate door (meaning every time you open your fridge, you're opening your freezer, too), the CDC noted that this breast milk can last up to two weeks. (This usually pertains to mini-fridges, like one you might have in your office.) For a freezer that's connected to your refrigerator, but has its own separate door (like most traditional fridges now), breast milk stored in there can last for three to six months.
And for an upright or chest freezer, like one you might have in your garage, you can safely store your breast milk for six to 12 months according to the CDC.
To make sure you get the most out of your freezer breast milk, keep your hands and your pumping supplies extremely clean so the milk can last as long as possible. The CDC also suggested storing the milk in the back of the freezer where your temperature is most constant so that the milk isn't affected by opening and closing freezer doors.