Keeping fruit and vegetables fresh for longer can be a real challenge. In a bid to save time and money we tend to visit the store or market less often but, if we end up with excessive food waste each week, that can be frustrating. Here are 11 Practical Tips for Keeping Fruit and Vegetables Fresh for Longer.
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#1. Ethylene Gas
As they ripen fruit and some vegetables produce an odourless gas called ethylene. It won’t cause you any harm, but storing items that produce high levels of ethylene gas alongside those that don’t, will cause your produce to spoil more quickly. So best to store fruit and vegetables separate both in and out of the refrigerator.
#2. Clean Your Fridge Regularly
It may sound really obvious, but by keeping your fridge really clean, you will get rid of food residues and spores that can cause mold which in turn can cause your fruit and vegetables to spoil more quickly.
#3. Don’t Pack Tightly
Don’t pack your fruit or vegetables tightly together either in the fridge, pantry or on the countertop. Let air circulate and reduce the risk of bruising and of moisture build up.
#4. Don’t Store in the Door
Each time you open your fridge door, the temperature fluctuates. You will increase the lifespan of your fruit and veg if you store it in the containers at the bottom or in your own special containers.
#5. Check the Packets
If you buy pre-packed fruit or vegetables, check the produce once you are home. Eat fruit or vegetables with blemishes or that are slightly more ripe first, as leaving them packed tightly could cause the whole packet to spoil more quickly. And remove any rotten produce immediately.
#6. Fresh Herbs
Just as you would a bunch of fresh flowers, by storing your fresh herbs upright in a vase or jar filled with water, you will keep them fresh for longer.
Alternatively, if you have used what you need, bundle them together and store them hanging upside down to dry out and use in the future or freeze them in packets.