Veganism is currently the flavour of the year. Although it’s been around for centuries, the growing desire for a healthy, modern lifestyle, has seen unprecedented amounts of vegan food produced each year. The Vegan Food Market was valued at $14.2 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach $31.4 billion by 2026.
With vegan food businesses popping up everywhere; exploring new trends and innovative concepts, it’s important that the food you supply is as tasty and fresh as ever when buying in bulk. Fresh fruit and veg are the staples of a vegan diet, but unfortunately, many are also perishable. As it’s World Vegan Month, we wanted to explore the correct vegan food storage to ensure your produce is safely and securely stored and kept as fresh as possible.
Follow our below storage tips and food wastage will become a thing of the past!
What are the Types of Food Storage?
There are three main types of storage:
This refers to the storing of items which don’t require a climate-controlled environment.
Refrigerated storage is kept at a temperature between 8-1°C.
Frozen storage will ensure your products are kept at a constant temperature, anywhere between -1 to -50°C.
How can we help?
We’ve made storing food safely a top priority in order to reduce food waste. Our cold storage solutions are perfect for use across many industries, including vegan food which requires a chilled environment to store products.
The temperature-controlled storage lets you create ambient storage, a cold store or frozen storage, ensuring your products remain fresh, whatever temperature ranges they need. We monitor our cold storage units to keep them safe and secure at the correct temperatures, so looking after your cold storage room is that little bit easier.
What are Food Type Categories?
Foods that require no refrigeration and can last on the shelf for an extremely long time.
Semi perishable foods are fruit and veg that have a shelf life of about 2 to 3 weeks.
Perishable foods are items that need to be refrigerated (fridge and freezer). They can’t survive without some type of refrigeration.
Top Tips to ensure your Vegan Produce Stays Fresh
Out of the Fridge (Room Temperature) Foods
- Cucumber, lemons, limes, oranges, aubergines, bananas, mangoes, pineapple and stone fruit.
- Avocados should stay out of the fridge to ripen, but once ripe, they will keep for longer in the fridge.
- Onions should stay outside the fridge until cut – to avoid a moisture overload, keep them away from potatoes!
- Potatoes, butternut squash and pumpkins should be stored in a cool, dry place.
- Garlic should be stored in the dark and stored in a paper bag – it can keep fresh for weeks.
- Root veg such as red peppers, broccoli should be stored in the fridge along with mushrooms which are kept fresher in a brown paper bag.
- Green vegetables retain their chlorophyll content for much longer when stored in the fridge – giving us the maximum amount of energy and antioxidants.
The Crisper Drawers
Crisper drawers have a different level of humidity from the rest of the refrigerator, optimising freshness in fruits and vegetables.
Always ensure that your drawers are never more than 3/4 full. Packing produce into the drawers decreases airflow and will cause the produce to rot faster.
A number of fruit and vegetables produce a natural plant hormone called ethylene. It’s released as a gas and essentially tells the fruit or vegetable to begin ripening. Both fruits and vegetables release ethylene gas, however, fruits produce more ethylene than vegetables do.
It’s important to know which food groups are sensitive to ethylene and which ones produce it. Follow our below advice and you’ll have longer-lasting, fresher produce whilst reducing waste!
This drawer is for produce that is sensitive to ethylene gas and that is sensitive to moisture loss. Setting the drawer to high-humidity closes the window and locks in moisture, which will help the produce stay crisper and fresher longer. Produce such as broccoli, carrots, leafy greens, strawberries and watermelon should be kept in the high-humidity drawer.
This drawer is for produce that emits ethylene gas and that is not sensitive to moisture loss. This setting opens up the window on the drawer and gives ethylene gas and moisture a chance to escape. Examples of produce to be kept in the low-humidity drawer are apples, avocados, kiwis, pears and stone fruit.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Keeps Food Fresh for Longer?
Purchase an ethylene gas absorber for your refrigerator. These little pods absorb the ethylene that is emitted from fruits and vegetables and can help keep them fresh up to 3 times longer!
What are Freeze-Dried Foods?
This is a fairly modern concept: a low-temperature dehydration process that involves freezing the product, lowering pressure, then removing the ice by sublimation. As long as correctly stored – these freeze-dried foods can survive for up to 25 years (way past their expiration dates!) The perfect example of vegan emergency food for future pandemics…
Our flexible frozen and Cold room storage in London is used by businesses of all sizes, from pop-ups and food delivery services to manufacturers and large-scale restaurants.
At Dephna, we offer flexible commercial kitchen spaces with 24-hour access and commission-free deliveries. If you’re interested in renting one of our commercial kitchens, dark kitchens or modular cold rooms for your vegan food business, book a visit to one of our prime London kitchen locations now.