Most food wastage occurs when we shop more than what we need. The solution, though, isn’t cutting back on fresh produce purchases. It’s getting smarter about how you shop and store them properly. Buy vegetables and fruits that can last longer and use them later.
Use stuff that will wilt or rot, sooner in your menu. You just need to follow a few simple steps to keep them lasting longer than they do when not stored properly. Make the best use of what you buy and store, rather than wasting resources.
Fruits And Veggies That Have A Longer Life
1. Apples Can Be Stored In Plastic Bags
Keep your apples fresh for weeks by wrapping them in a plastic bag, preferably in a zip-lock pouch away from vegetables. A little change in temperature, something even 10 degrees warmer than 30 to 32 degrees, will make them ripen faster. The smaller the apple the longer they last!1
2. Carrots Have To Be Stored Dry
The best way to store carrots is to keep them dry. Wrap them in plastic bags lined with tissues or paper towels that can be changed when they get moist. Else, store them in cloth bags that need to be changed when moist too. Stored this way can keep them fresh for months.
3. Beetroot Can Be Stored For Months
Juicy, healthy beets last for nearly 2 to 4 months in the refrigerator if they are stored properly. Cut off the greens, if they are attached to the beetroot and store them in perforated bags in the vegetable crisper in the refrigerator.2
4. Garlic Is Best Stored In Dark Places
Garlic can be stored as bulbs in the refrigerator, wrapped whole in paper bags. Cut garlic will leave all the food smelling of garlic. But once out of the cold, it starts sprouting pretty fast and hence needs to be used as soon as possible. Otherwise, garlic can be stored in the dark kitchen cabinet itself, in moderate humidity.3
5. Cabbages Can Be Stored For 2 Months
Leafy cabbage lasts for quite some time, nearly two months if wrapped in plastic and stored in the refrigerator. Since most greens and delicate leafy vegetables wilt within days, cabbages are a great standby for salads. But, cabbages do taste better when fresh!
6. Potatoes Are Best Stored In Cellars
Keep your potatoes away from onions to make them stay fresh longer! Onions and apples emit gases that speed up the ripening process. Ideally, potatoes do not like light and should be stored in basement or cellar like conditions, away from light and humidity. This way they stay fresh for 2 to 4 months.4
7. Onions Can Be Stored In Mesh Bags
Onions, when stored in dry, airy areas, will stay fresh for a longer time than any other vegetable. When you do not have airy spaces, store them in mesh bags in kitchen cabinets. Do not let them get wet. They just need to stay dry to stay longer.5
Storing fruits and vegetables can be only for emergencies, sheer convenience and in conditions where daily procurement is not possible. Ideally, they need to be consumed fresh, to extract the maximum nutrient value.