Two main things to remember:  

o Do not wash produce until you are ready to eat it.  

o Store fruits and vegetables separately.  

Proper Fruit Storage  

Fruits like low moisture. Berries last about three days so eat those first.
Store unwashed strawberries on a paper towel in a sealed plastic storage

Berries, oranges, pineapples, cherries, grapes and watermelon do not
ripen after picking. Put them directly into the refrigerator. Lemons and
limes can be kept on the counter, but last longer in the refrigerator.   

Buy bananas green, and let them ripen to use when you want them.
Banana skins turn black in the refrigerator, but the fruit will still taste the 
same. When bananas are overly ripe, peel them, put them in small food 
or fruit storage bags and freeze them for smoothies.  

caring for your fruits & vegetables

Ripen certain fruits on the counter and move them to the refrigerator when
they are soft to the touch. Unripe pears, apricots, peaches, plums,
mangoes, honeydew melons, cantaloupes, bananas, kiwis, and avocados
can soften on the counter. Once they turn soft to the touch, move them into
the refrigerator.  Apples will also continue to ripen.  Put un-bruised apples
in the refrigerator to keep them crisp for many weeks.

Vegetable Storage

In general, vegetables stay fresh in a moist environment, which means the
crisper drawer of the refrigerator.  Keep only the broccoli in a bag so the
whole refrigerator doesn't smell like broccoli. If you don't have a crisper
drawer, store the vegetables wrapped in a plastic bag on in a plastic

Too much moisture can be bad for your vegetables, and brown spots will
develop especially on lettuce if it is too damp.  

Store tomatoes on the counter and only chill them right before serving.  

Potatoes, onions, eggplant, and hard shell squashes should be stored in a
cool, dry place.  

Following these guidelines will ensure you get the most value and flavor from your fresh fruits and vegetables.

For more ideas on produce storage and healthy eating on a budget, visit

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