Foods That Should Be Kept Out of the Fridge

And as it turns out, the refrigerator is not the go-to storage unit for all your produce. Below are 5 types of produce you shouldn’t keep in your fridge.

Tomatoes: The fridge is not the ideal place to store tomatoes. Store them there and your perfect tomatoes turn into a mealy disappointment. They’ll still be good for cooking, but not the best for eating fresh. Instead store them on your counter (not in direct sunlight) and enjoy them when they’re ripe.

Basil: Extended periods of time in a cold environment like a refrigerator causes it to wilt prematurely. Basil will do best if it’s stored on your counter and treated as you would fresh cut-flowers.

Potatoes: They do best at around 45 degrees F, which is about 10 degrees warmer than the average refrigerator. Most of us don’t have a root cellar, so keeping them in a paper bag in a coolish spot (like a pantry) is best. Storing potatoes at cold temperatures converts their starch to sugar more quickly, which can affect the flavor, texture and the way they cook.


Onions: Onions don’t come out of the ground with that protective papery skin. To develop and keep that dry outer layer, they need to be “cured” and kept in a dry environment like a pantry, which is not as damp as the refrigerator. Store onions in a cool, dry, dark, well-ventilated place. (Light can cause the onions to become bitter.)

Avocados: Avocados don’t start to ripen until after they’re picked from the tree. The bottom line on storing avocados is store hard, unripe avocados on your counter and store ripe avocados in your refrigerator if you’re not going to eat them right away.

Source: Yahoo News

Image: Summer Tomato

How Do We Solve the Plastic Bag Problem?

The European Commission is to publish proposals in the spring designed to reduce the number of plastic bags used in Europe each year. Most of the 15,000 people who took part in a public consultation favoured an outright ban – but what are the options?

Last year Italy became the first country in Europe to ban non-biodegradable single-use plastic bags. A number of countries have banned very thin plastic bags, including China, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda and Bangladesh – in Bangladesh’s case, it was found that the bags had clogged up the drainage system, exacerbating deadly floods.

The Republic of Ireland introduced a charge of 15 euro cents (12p, 20 US cents) per bag in March 2002, which led to a 95% reduction in plastic bag litter. Belgium, Germany, Spain, Norway and the Netherlands are among the countries following Ireland’s lead.


If shoppers stop using plastic bags, they must start using other kinds of bags, but there is no perfect solution. Stronger, heavier bags, whether made of fabric or plastic, have a bigger environmental impact than standard supermarket shopping bags. For instance, if a plastic bag is used just once, then a paper bag must be used three times to compensate for the larger amount of carbon used in manufacturing and transporting it, a plastic “bag for life” must be used four times, and a cotton bag must be used 131 times.

Paper bags have been the traditional shopping bag of choice in the US, but while these biodegrade in landfill, the UK Environment Agency study points out that they have a higher carbon footprint than standard plastic carrier bags. It also says the available evidence suggests paper bags are not generally reused, either as bin liners – a purpose for which they are not well suited – or for other purposes.

Source: BBC News

Image: Packaging Innovations