How to store fruit and vegetables without plastic
What’s wrong with plastic?
I know, it’s easy to grab fruit and veggies, put them in a plastic bag and fling them in the crisper when you get home.
But, if you are keen on doing your bit for the planet, searching out other options besides plastic is really worthwhile.
Hopefully you have somewhere you can source loose produce, which is always the best option. Get some reusable produce bags to take with you when shopping or use a basket or box. It really does become a habit, just like using your reusable shopping bags!
As well as being environmentally unfriendly, plastic bags don’t allow your produce to breath so it decays quicker and loses flavour. Slimy zucchini anyone? There are also some concerns about plastic leaching into our food and causing health issues.
Reducing food wastage is also a hot topic at the moment, so storing your food correctly and keeping it fresher for longer can help you significantly cut down how much you waste.
Convinced to make the switch?
First up, lets talk about things that go in the fridge and things that don’t.
Produce that like being at room temperature are tomato, potato, onion, garlic and most fruits. Pop them in a basket so there is a bit of airflow around them. Mushrooms store better in a paper bag or a dry cloth bag.
For the fruit and vegetables that are stored in the fridge and for anything you have cut, here are some ways you can do store them without plastic:
♥ Use a wet tea towel.
Okay, pretty basic right? Pop a damp tea towel over the fruit and vegetables in the crisper and tuck it in well. You usually need to wet it every couple of days. The only problem with this method is training everyone else in your house to put the tea towel back properly so it’s all tucked in around the produce!!
♥ Use a fabric bag
You can utilise reusable produce bags I mentioned for shopping and for storage. They are smaller and as they are quite lightweight you do have to keep wetting them more often. Obviously the mesh ones don’t work.
I prefer the organic cotton bags.
♥ Use The Swag
The Swag bags are pretty awesome! Made from 100% natural unbleached cotton, these award winning bags have a three layer design to keep your produce fresher for much longer. They come in different sizes or you can get a starter kit.
To use, simply wet the bags, pop your produce in and store anywhere in the fridge. When it gets a little dry, you can simple sprinkle a bit of water on top!
Find out more about The Swag here.
♥ Use the Greenleaf Bag
Created by Helen, a mum from Toowoomba, the Greenleaf Bags are a larger size bag than the reusable produce bags. They are made from unbleached, undyed 100% hemp which is a very sustainable and safe fabric. These bags need to be damp, so you wet them, wring out and put your veggies in. Repeat every few days as they dry out.
You can store several different types of vegetables in the one bag but softer leafy greens should be on their own. Simply throw into the wash after each use.
Find out more here.
♥ Use beeswax wraps
Beeswax wraps are great for wrapping around cut bits of fruit and veggies instead of cling wrap. You can also make little pockets with them to store smaller portions.
The Honey Bee beeswax wraps are a great quality brand and are hand made by a small business in Byron Bay. They are made from organic cotton and locally sourced organic beeswax which is naturally anti-bacterial. Beeswax wraps keep produce really fresh and are toxin free.
Check out Honey Bee Wraps and the vegan version here.
♥ Use food covers
These canvas food covers with a biodegradable lining work really well on things like pumpkin, pineapple, melons and coconuts once you have cut them.
I have been using these for years and they are incredibly durable and still in great condition. I just throw them into the washing machine.
Check them out here.
How do you store your fruit and veggies? Got any tips for us?