Most households encounter pest infestations, especially if you are residing in North Carolina. Experts at pest control Raleigh identify ants, spiders, bed bugs, cockroaches, ticks and fleas, termites, and rodents as the most common pests they treat in a home. However, what causes these pest infestations in our homes? A lot of these problems arise from not properly storing food items.
Pests are consistently hunting for food, and they can find it in our kitchen. To prevent them from coming into our North Carolina home, we should practice cleanliness and store our food properly. Different types of foods need certain types of storage to keep them fresh and prolong their life. Here are some tips on how to properly store our food.
What Foods Should be Refrigerated?
Refrigerators have various refrigeration areas with different climatic zones where you can store fresh foods to prevent spoilage. It is imperative you know the type of food and which location you will keep them. Generally, everyday foods are all fresh products, as they need a cold atmosphere and stay moist.
Some foods requiring refrigeration are:
- Fish and meat
- Cheese and other dairy products
- Opened foods such as spreads and sauces
- Opened juices
- Leftover foods
Vegetables and other salads
What Foods Expire the Fastest?
Not everything you store in the fridge will stay fresh, and these are:
- Citrus fruits lose their vitamins and aroma
- Bread becomes dry
- Coffee loses its flavor and absorbs odors in the fridge
- Tomatoes will have their ripening interrupted, affecting their taste
- Basil withers
- Honey crystallizes when it gets cold
- Potatoes and sweet potatoes turn floury and germinate
- Onions become moist and produce mold
- Avocado needs room temperature to ripen
- Olive oil turns hard and flaky
- Bananas develop brown spots
What Foods Can You Freeze?
Frozen foods have a longer shelf life, especially if you store them in the freezer compartment subfreezing temperatures. Foods such as fresh meat, pre-cooked foods, and vegetables can be frozen to extend their life.
However, there are also limitations with some foods’ shelf life. How long can you freeze food? Here are some guidelines (make sure you check your freezer’s temperature):
- Butter – six to eight months
- Pork – four to seven months
- Beef – nine to 12 months
- Poultry – two to 10 months
- Fish – two to four months
- Bread – one to three months
- Fresh fruits – eight to 12 months
- Vegetables – six to 12 months
- Fresh herbs – eight to 10 months
- Hard cheese – two to four months
- Soft cheese – five to six months
- Cooked food – three to five months
What Foods are Considered “Shelf Stable?”
Some foods can be stored on the shelf in a dry cupboard (or open air shelf) and do not need to have a cool and frozen environment. Cupboards can protect these foods, and you can easily access them for consumption. Some of these foods are:
- Pasta and rice
- Instant food products
- Coffee and tea
- Canned food
Cookies and biscuits
What Foods Should You Store in the Pantry or Cellar?
You can also use your pantry or cellar to store food and supplies if you do not have enough space in the kitchen. These areas have a dark and cool environment, which can be ideal for foods such as:
Why do People Stockpile Food?
If you have enough storage in your kitchen, food stockpiling can be important for many reasons. You can benefit from storing food, especially if you have an unusual time for your work.
Throughout recent history people have been stockpiling due to severe weather events and pandemics. However, there are many reasons to stockpile including:
Minimize your time for shopping
Finding good deals when buying in larger quantities
Build a resourceful mentality in making sure you utilize your stockpile
Gain peace of mind by being able to “see your food”
Avoid price fluctuations from things like shortages or sudden popularity
We must keep our foods appropriately stored to prevent spoilage, which pests love to seek out. Keeping our kitchen and the whole house clean can give us good benefits for our health and well-being.