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How to Keep Fruits and Veggies Fresh

Proper Storage Prevents Spoilage, Saving You Hundreds


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  • I think the chart is a great and useful guide...just use your own commonsense and if you havent used a "counter" item in a couple days. then put it in the fridge !!! BTW thanks for the printing tip, worked like a charm!!
    I also have used the vinegar water wash for veggies and fruit , really works
    In regard to berries, i just learned this year to wash ALL berries in 1part white vinegar and 9 parts cold water, then rinse in clear water. I haven't had a bad berry all Summer! It really works!

    Many times like charts are inserted into articles as images. Try this approach: hover your mouse over the chart, right click the mouse and a list of actions should pop up. Choose "Open in new window" while you are still over the chart. That should pop up a new window with only the chart in it.

    The chart, in the new window, should show as larger than it was in the old window. At least it should be the only item in the window. Print that image for a suitable page that you can hang or tape anywhere you please!

  • Once again I wonder about the sensibilities and knowledge of the people who write these articles. Who in the world except someone with a commercial sized kitchen has the counter space to store fruits and vegetables as described, or even has refrigerators with more than a single produce drawer? Get real please. Your credibility is at stake.
    Very informative.thank you.
  • This is good info. I have a tendency not to use up the produce that purchase and I hate that so I want to try to do better about using it. Storage is apparently key.
  • JULIE700
    I now know why most all of my fruit rots within a few days. Great tips!
  • Most of the produce I buy comes in bags of frozen veggies (so no waste). but over the last few year I've invested in plastic air tight containers and they have saved me a ton of money. I keep each container with only it's own kind. Everything lasts much longer that way. Two of my staples...celery and carrots...I keep separately in tall plastic air tight containers that are classified as pasta boxes. Lasts for 2 weeks and stay like fresh bought
  • everytime i get bananas they go bad within a day or two. no matter what i do or where i get them they go bad by the next morning. what can i do different?
  • I don't waste one scrap of my veggies because anything that is about to go bad either gets frozen for soup or put into a smoothie. Any scraps that can't be re-used go into the compost bin & feed my organic gardens. No waste!
  • Not a Tupperware dealer (so no sales pitch . . . was roped into going to a party about 5 years ago)--but those veggie-keeper containers are AMAZING (expensive, but worth it). They seal tight but have two little buttons on the side for different degrees of ventilation. Before: carrots and celery would get limp; apples would shrivel, lettuce would wilt or turn to slime. Now I can literally keep things like those salad mixes for two WEEKS or more ....apples and carrots and mini-peppers and celery for a month--beautiful. For most, I don't even bother to separate--just toss all of the stuff in together. My big bin right now has satsuma oranges, peppers, brocolli, apples. One of my rectangle tubs has lettuce, carrots with leafy tops, cilantro, green onions. A smaller one: raspberries (a week!) Even better, the containers have a permanent list imprinted on the side for how to set the "buttons" for different types of fruit/veggies. I try and "group" like kinds together, but it isn't super-critical. Bottom line: I'm saving that $600 worth of produce now vs. tossing in the trash. Ha! Maybe I SHOULD sell Tupperware . . .
  • Many types of fruit and veg can be frozen from fresh without having to go through the blanching and drying. Just prep them, eg top and tail, peel, remove rinds, etc.
    Wedges of fresh lemon and lime freeze really well, and can be used from frozen in drinks.
    Once berries etc have been frozen in a single layer, they can be bagged or boxed to take up less room.
    Common sense needs to be a part of your storage - what works in a hot climate will not satisfy the needs of a cooler or a cold climate. Having said which, I would never leave cucumber out of the fridge, even in the Scottish winter.
    Find out what works for you in your home - even keep a note magnetted on the fridge doort till you've got it sussed.

    Above all - let's remember that "current" advice seems to go out of fashion after a while. For example, it used to be that one kept tomatoes in the fridge, but eggs on the worktop. Now it's very much the other way around.

    Garry65 - I intend to have a look at the website you mention. Is it averaged out, or is it specific to a particular area/climate?
    I think it's interesting many people do not agree with the countertop list. Refrigerating those fruits and vegetables certainly changes the texture, makes them go bad faster, and they lose most of their flavor, in my experience. I would only refrigerate after cutting them. The only one I disagree with is peppers as they tend to get soft after a night on the counter. One tip for mushrooms in the fridge is store in a paper bag to ward off humidity that makes them slimy!
  • GARRY65
    I agree that the counter method is not recommended. We have researched fruit & veg wastage for several years at and there are 3 primary controllers of postharvest fresh storage life. The single most important factor is temperature. Without temperature control fresh produce has a death sentence and storage life is reduced by more than 50%. Next most important is removing ethylene exposure. Once your prduce is in the refrigerator then removing ethylene gas is the critical component in keeping them fresh for longer. By removing ethylene we have been able to keep lettuce fresh for 3 weeks longer and broccoli fresh for 5 weeks longer. The 3rd critical factor is Humidity, for items without a hard protective epidermus (skin) then this is critical .... soft, bendy carrots for example are a humidity problem. Moisture loss.

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