Do ferments need to be refrigerated?

We’ve received several questions from people asking why lacto-fermented foods needed refrigerated storage.

Since most people no longer have an 1800s style root cellar, cave, or a fermentation burial chamber in their backyard (popular in Korean for making kimchi), all of which never go above 50ºF or below 32ºF, we suggest lacto-fermented food should be stored in a refrigerator.

Traditional societies stored their fermented foods in root cellars, caves – even special underground compartments, dug into the earth, into which crocks of fermented food were stored. Modern homes, however, typically don’t include a root cellar, and have heated basements, so the refrigerator is going to be the best long-term storage method. If you are fortunate and have any of the above? As long as the temperature is in the 32ºF to 50ºF range, you may store it at that room temperature.

Pickl-It has square sides, not round, which are more a efficient use of space, stacked side-by-side in the refrigerator.