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Produce Storage
Guidelines to
Keep Your Food Fresh

Produce storage guidelines 1

Produce Storage Guidelines

Produce Storage Guidelines: As stated on Refrigerator Food Storage, foods cost money and with inflation and rapidly increasing fuel prices which also drives up the cost of food, it makes good sense to take care of the food you spend your hard-earned money on.

Knowing how to store food correctly will prolong the life of your food and reduces the risk of E-coli and salmonella, which keeps you and your family safe and healthy.

You become a five-star restaurant at home with proper refrigerator food storage.  By using these produce storage guidelines, you will be able to:

  • Make your food safer food to eat,
  • Have your food retain most of its nutrients,
  • Improve your health by eating healthy food,
  • Retain the texture and flavor of your food, and
  • Save money by not wasting food and/or eating out.

Use the handy chart below to help you get the most from your food!


Refrigerator Storage Information

The Recommended Storage Times (RST) below are based on storage temperature of 37°F.


Produce Storage
Guidelines Chart

Food Item RST Handling Tips
Fruits: n/a n/a
Apples 1 to 3 weeks Get rid of bruised or decayed fruit.
Bananas 1-3 days Refrigerate only when fully ripe.
Berries, Cherries 1-2 days Store in moisture resistant bag or wrap.
Citrus 3 weeks Do not wash before storing -- moisture may encourage spoiling.
Juices Bottled, reconstituted, frozen, canned (6 days) Keep tightly covered. Transfer canned juice to plastic or glass container if not used within one day.

Do not return unused juice to container (prevents bacteria growth).

Melons 1 week Wrap uncut pieces to prevent odor spreading to other foods and retain moisture.
Vegetables n/a n/a
Asparagus 1-2 days Keep stems moist.
Beans (green or wax) 1-2 days Keep in crisper in moisture proof bags or wrap.
Beets, carrots, radishes 1-2 weeks Remove leafy tops. Keep in crisper.
Corn in husks 1-2 days Store in crisper.
Lettuce (unwashed) 5-7 days Keep in moisture proof wrap, bag or lettuce keeper.
Lettuce (washed/drained) 3-5 days Store away from other produce to prevent russet spotting.
Mushrooms (fresh) 1-2 days Do not wash before storing.
Onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams Indefinite Refrigeration not necessary. Store in cool, dry location (cupboard or pantry).
Shredded cabbage, leaf and bib lettuce, salad greens 1-2 days Store in moisture resistant wrap or bag.
Tomatoes 1-2 days Ripen at room temperature away from direct sun. Refrigerate.
Unshelled peas, limas, spinach 3-5 days Keep in crisper in moisture-resistant wrap or bags.

[Note: Information obtained from Texas Agricultural Extension Service, The Texas A&M University System]


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