Undoubtedly, perishable foods require much more attention compared to normal foodstuffs with a longer shelf life. We all know that these foods are delicate and can cause food poisoning easily.
So, homeowners have to store perishable foods using the right techniques. The majority of these foods require very low temperatures to survive for long periods. They are not as easy to store like grains which have a longer shelf life.
Also, homeowners should be careful about cooked perishable foods. They are highly vulnerable to rotting and last for approximately three days when in the fridge.
Storing perishable foods using the proper techniques helps you prevent diseases that arise from food contamination.
In this article, we look at the best practices for storing certain perishable foods based on their shelf life.
Best practices for storing perishable foods
Fresh fruits and vegetables
Often, fresh fruits and vegetables do not have a date label. So, it is crucial to identify the maximum lifespan of all farm produce.
Food experts say that you can tell the condition of fruits and vegetables just by looking at them.
For instance, if your greens start withering and changing color, this might be a possible sign of rotting.
The amount of time fresh produce can last in the fridge depends on the type of fruit and vegetable. But on average, vegetables and fruits last for several days.
Additionally, to maximize the lifespan of these fruits and vegetables, you have to store them appropriately. Put them in the refrigerator and do not store them in grocery bags.
Also, do not wash greens when storing them in the fridge. Fruits like apples can last in the refrigerator for approximately three weeks.
On the other hand, apricots can last up to 5 days while in the fridge. But it all depends on your needs.
If you want your fruits to ripen much faster, store them in a plastic bag and do not refrigerate them. Doing this produces a gas named ethylene that speeds up the ripening process.
On the flip side, if you want your apple to stay for long, keep it in the refrigerator.
Storing raw meat
Raw meat is delicate and should stay in the fridge for long. Food experts recommend storing raw beef for a maximum of two days in the refrigerator.
One of the easiest ways to prolong the lifespan of raw meat is by keeping it in the freezer.
So, always cook raw white and red meat after two days of storage. Moreover, steak, roasts, and chops should remain in the fridge for a maximum of five days.
Raw meat is more delicate than other types of food. Ensure you store it using the proper techniques.
How long will my juice last in the fridge?
Fresh juices are not only delicious but play a huge role in boosting your health. So, it is essential to ensure fresh juices stay in good condition for a long time.
The period of storage depends on the quantity of the liquid. Smaller amounts won’t give you a hard storage time since you will consume them quickly. But if you have a lot of juice, you have to ensure it stays fresh for a long time.
One of the ways to do this is to store it at very low temperatures in your refrigerator.
Consuming the juice right away is always the best way to prevent spoilage. One way to do this is to ensure you juice just enough to consume in a day or two.
In most instances, dairy products will stay in perfect condition even after the ‘sell by’ date if refrigerated Actually, they can stay for up to one week.
You may notice odd changes in the dairy product. But the leading cause of these changes is not bacteria.
So, you can always consume dairy products even after the ‘sell-by’ date if they are in your fridge or freezer.
It is best to store milk in low temperatures to prolong its lifespan. In turn, you will prevent the growth of bacteria in the milk.
You should store milk in a refrigerator using less than 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Otherwise, the milk won’t be fit for human consumption after a day.
Moreover, you can prolong the lifespan of milk by boiling the milk to approximately 145 degrees Fahrenheit or more. But the best way is to store it in the refrigerator.
If you know you won’t use your milk anytime soon, ensure you keep it in the freezer compartment.
Milk tends to become rancid when it contains harmful bacteria. So, once you feel a sour taste when taking your milk, know that it is unfit for human consumption.
For treated dairy products like long life milk, they can stay fresh even outside the refrigerator or cooler for a long time, until the sell by date.
Unlike milk, yogurt, and sour cream have a longer lifespan but it is recommended that you store them in a fridge. Often, these items have undergone fermentation. The bacteria that ferments such products is more powerful than the dangerous bacteria.
So, it is hard for harmful bacteria to accumulate in such products. Nonetheless, these dairy products can become rancid over time. With them, you will notice unpleasant smells and tastes.
When they get to this stage, it would be best to discard them. Usually, yogurt and sour cream can last for weeks as long as they are refrigerated
Cheese should also get refrigerated to prevent the growth of mold. The good thing with cheese is that you can always discard the decayed part and continue eating the rest.
Since cheese has undergone fermentation, it is likely to last longer. It is still important though to consume it before it develops mold.
Even though it is unnecessary to put butter in the refrigerator, doing so extends its lifespan. So, it depends on the size of the butter.
If you have large quantities of butter, you’d rather store it in the fridge before it gets spoilt. But if you have a small butter container, you can always put it in the kitchen cabinet. It won’t stay on the shelf for long because you will use it anyway.
One of the most delicate dairy products is ice cream. This product cannot last over a day without freezing. In fact, it may not reach its expiration date.
So, once you open an ice cream container, ensure you finish eating all the ice cream at once. But if you intend to store it, put it in the freezer compartment. Always check whether the ice cream is in good condition before consuming it.
More often than not, homeowners find it challenging to store perishable foods. Remember, these foods are delicate and require special attention.
So, it is vital to keep them in very low temperatures to prolong their shelf life. The lifespan of each perishable food varies.
For example, raw meat can stay up to two days in the fridge. On the other hand, dairy products like ice cream do not even reach their expiration date once opened.
It is, therefore, essential to know the various types of perishable foods and their storage methods. This way, you can prevent food wastage.