As you returned home from the market and unloaded your sack of produce, have you ever simply admired the satisfying bounty? Enjoyed the color, texture, and aroma as cantaloupe, broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, lettuce, cherries, apricots, avocado, strawberries and more passed through your hands? But now, what to do with each item … how best to keep it fresh and tasty until you’re ready to eat it?
The Postharvest Technology Center offers free copies of an 8.5” x 11” full color poster that shows which produce items should go in your refrigerator, which items should never go in the refrigerator, and finally, which items should be ripened at room temperature and then placed in the refrigerator.
“’Storing Fresh Fruits and Vegetable for Better Taste’ is a handy tool to keep on your refrigerator,” said Beth Mitcham, center director. “Where you store your produce can have a profound effect both on how good it tastes, and how long you can keep it at an optimal state until you’re ready to serve it to your family.”
Produce marketing researchers have noted that with the current recession, shoppers are feeling guiltier than ever when they end up having to toss out fruits or veggies ‘gone bad.’
“It’s like a double guilt,” explained Dr. Roberta Cook, “not only has the shopper with the best of intentions not eaten the food they know is healthiest for them, but they have also wasted their money. Following the handling recommendations for each produce item can really improve the consumer’s experience on several levels.”