BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention relates to storage receptacles. More particularly, the present invention relates to storage and freezer bags having multiple compartments.
2. Description of the Related Art
The use of plastic film bags with a closeable mouth such as by a pressure zipper type closure is well known for the storage of foods within a refrigerator or a freezer. It would be desirable to have a multiple compartment bag for storing different foods so they can be thawed and cooked or warmed together to make a predetermined meal. Multiple compartment bags would take less precious storage space in the freezer than a large number of single-compartment bags. It would also be desirable to have a bag which is re-usable.
U.S. Pat. No. 5,804,265, issued Sep. 8, 1998, to Saad et al., describes various embodiments of a freezer storage bag having multiple bags. The bag has an inner food contacting bag and an outer support bag surrounding the inner bag. This bag acts essentially as a first single bag with a second bag surrounding the first bag to reduce freezer burn and has no provision for storing different foods in individual bags.
U.S. Pat. No. 6,119,855, issued Sep. 19, 2000, to Yeager et al. Describes various embodiments of a storage bag with multiple compartments. The bag has a first outer panel, a second outer panel, and an inner panel constructed from a plastic film. The panels are connected together to form a storage bag with a first compartment and a second compartment. A first compartment is made to contain an absorbent pad or similar material which is saturated with water and permanently sealed. The second compartment is attached to the first compartment and contains a sealable and openable compartment where articles of clothing and the like are stored which require a certain level of humidity to maintain them in a useable condition. The first compartment is made of plastic film which is permeable to moisture. The second compartment is made of permeable material, at least in the area where it contacts the first compartment such the moisture may reach the article to be stored. No provision is made for opening and closing the first compartment, once it is attached to the second compartment.
U.S. Patent to Hosier et al. describes a two-compartment container for containing materials that are to be delivered simultaneously for mixture of materials that are to be used at separate times. It further discloses forming more than two compartments by supplying one or more extra semi-permeable seals. The multiple bag container of Hosier et al. is not intended as a freezer bag and is sealed around its contents for a single use, only. No provision is made for re-closing any of the compartments for a second period of use. The primary embodiment of the two-compartment container is to provide an easily rupturable wall between the two compartments so that the two materials may be mixed before rupturing the permanent seal to the outside for deployment of the mixed material for its intended use.
U.S. Pat. No. 4,993,844, issued Feb. 19, 1991, to Robinson et al. describes a compartmented double zipper pouch having first and second pockets adjacent one another with a common wall portion. Each pocket has an opening with a pressure actuated re-sealable fastener. This multiple bag is not constructed of material intended for freezing, and one of the bags has adhesive for attaching to packages for shipping and thus may not be reuseable due to tearing during removal from the shipped package. The overlapping compartments sharing a wall and dividing the two compartments would not be a suitable configuration for storage or freezing, since flavors of the different foods may, over time, permeate through such a wall with an undesirable result. Also, since food generally contains substantial amounts of water, the shared wall compartment configuration of the '844 disclosure would result in a bulky configuration with separation forces developing around the mutual edges which may result in failure of the bag through the development of a rupture.
U.S. Pat. No. 6,020,013, issued Feb. 1, 2000, to Kozma describes a freezer bag having two compartments. One compartment is for receiving food through a mouth for freezing and is sealed by interlocking zippers. A second compartment is formed in the mouth of the first compartment for holding water which will freeze and is sealed by another pair of interlocking zippers at the entrance to the bag mouth. This provides a triple seal at the mouth for long term storage of foods. There is no separate access to the food containing compartment.
None of the above inventions and patents, taken either singularly or in combination, is seen to describe the instant invention as claimed. Thus a food storage bags with multiple compartments solving the aforementioned problems is desired.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
The present invention is a refrigerator food storage and freezer bag having multiple compartments in which different foods may be stored. The bag is partitioned into separate chambers so that several food items can be stored in the same bag with each food item having its own compartment. The number of chambers varies depending upon the specific storage requirements of the user. For example, the multiple storage chamber bag may have two, three, or four separate storage chambers. Each storage chamber has its own zipper locking mechanism to close the compartment and keep the contents of the chamber fresh. The multiple compartment storage bag conserves space within a refrigerator or freezer because multiple food items can be stored in a single bag, e.g. food items to prepare a full meal. The inventive multiple compartment bag may be washed and reused.
Accordingly, it is a principal object of the invention to provide a refrigerator storage and freezer bag having multiple compartments for accommodating different foods.
It is another object of the invention to provide a refrigerator storage and freezer bag having multiple compartments in which each two adjacent compartments share a common edge.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a refrigerator storage and freezer bag as above having re-openable and closeable mouths for placing in and removing food therefrom.
Still another object of the invention is to provide a refrigerator storage and freezer bag as above having zipper pressure seals for closure of each of the compartment mouths.
It is yet another object of the invention to provide a refrigerator storage and freezer bag as above having radial common edges emanating from a single central point.
It is still another object of the invention to provide a refrigerator storage and freezer bag having a central point and common radial edges as above and having four compartments, the mouths of which form a square.
It is yet another object of the invention to provide a refrigerator storage and freezer bag which is reusable.
It is an object of the invention to provide improved elements and arrangements thereof for the purposes described which is inexpensive, dependable and fully effective in accomplishing its intended purposes.
These and other objects of the present invention will become readily apparent upon further review of the following specification and drawings.
Referring to FIG. 5, there is shown a plan view of radially disposed, multiple compartment refrigerator storage and freezer bag system 80. Multiple compartment refrigerator storage and freezer bag 82 is in the general shape of a square with triangular-shaped compartments and features first compartment 84, second compartment 86, third compartment 88 and fourth compartment 90, which adjoins first compartment 84, and are separated by shared edges 92, 94, 96, and 98, respectively. First compartment 84 is located along a first side of refrigerator storage and freezer bag 82 and features mouth 100 sealed by pressure zipper seal 102. Second compartment 86 is located along a second side of refrigerator storage and freezer bag 82 and features mouth 104 sealed by zipper seal 106. Third compartment 88 is located along a third side of refrigerator storage and freezer bag 82 and features mouth 108 sealed by pressure zipper seal 110. Fourth compartment 90 is located along a fourth side of refrigerator storage and freezer bag 82 and features mouth 112 sealed by zipper seal 114. Each of these mouths may be opened through their respective zipper seals and food inserted and removed as desired. Other sealing means may be employed as desired, and freezer bag 82 is re-useable.