As long as you have it very well wrapped, airtight as possible, most meats are good up to a year. Ground meats should be frozen no more than 3-4 months, poultry up to 12 months, roasts up to 12 months, etc. All of these are safe if frozen longer, but the quality begins to deteriorate. Also, try to freeze foods as quickly as possible, both in regards to the use by date and how quickly it goes from cold to frozen. Don't over-crowd the freezer and keep foods in a single layer until frozen. Quick freezing ensures even, small ice crystals, which will ensure the best quality when thawed. Slow freezing caused large ice crystals, which damage cells during thawing, resulting in the water content (juices) seeping out of the meat when you thaw, which in turn causes the meat to be dry and tasteless when cooked.
at 1:06 PM on Oct. 28, 2008