People often think fresh produce and high-quality food won’t last anywhere near as long as cheaper, heavily-processed foods that are mass produced. But that is not necessarily the case.
If you choose your foods wisely and store them properly, you can greatly increase their shelf life. You will have less wastage, and you’ll have the food you need when you need it.
Pick the Right Food
With the right preparation you can store just about anything for a long time. But some foods are much better suited to long-term storage than others.
Honey is a good example. It’s been discovered in ancient Egyptian tombs, so it will last for years inside your cupboard. Wheat and oats also last for years, and things such as salt and vinegar can be used to preserve other foods.
Store it Right
How you store your food is just as important as what you buy. Most food lasts longer if it’s stored in cool, dark places. And make sure that you store it in airtight containers. If you don’t the food will spoil much quicker, and could also become a target for insects and other pests.
You can also store some food longer by preserving it using a variety of methods.
- Freeze Drying and Dehydration use two different methods to effectively remove the moisture from the food. Unless you want to spend a lot of money on equipment, you’re better off buying food that’s already been dehydrated. It’s a great way to store milk for a long time, and powdered milk retains its flavour well. You can also buy freeze-dried meals that just need water to make them ready to eat.
- Canning lets you store food in airtight containers. It works particularly well for foods such as jam or salsa.
- Foods such as salt, honey and vinegar can be used as homemade preservatives. By storing vegetables in vinegar, you can enjoy them for years to come.