Fruit Storage Temperatures. Because you Always Wanted to Know
A Word About Ripening:
Fruits come in two categories when it comes to how they ripen, climacteric and non-climacteric. Climacteric fruits depend on ethylene to ripen; they use up oxygen and produce carbon dioxide. These fruits, because ethylene is their catalyst for ripening, can be harvested when they are not yet ripe and then ripen on the way to market. Non-climacteric fruits on the other hand don’t produce ethylene; they must be picked when ripe because they rely on the parent plant for their sweetness. In other words, once you pick them, they stop getting sweeter, so pick them at the right time. They will continue to soften and generate aroma, but they won’t get any sweeter. Pineapple, citrus fruits, berries and melons are non-climacteric fruits; they don’t get sweeter off the vine. However, even climacteric fruits should be left on the vine for as long as possible because, despite the fact that they can ripen off the vine, they become more nutritious on the vine until their moment of optimal ripeness. Storage temperature is obviously an important part of keeping fruits. Bananas, we all know, don’t do well in the refrigerator. Likewise, tomatoes have interesting properties that don’t lend themselves to the cold. To get the most flavor and texture out of your fruits, store them at the correct temperatures.
|Fruits: Optimal Storage Temperatures|
|Fruit||Store at 32oF/0oC||Store at 45oF/7oC||Store at 55oF/12oC|
The above storage temperatures are from On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen by Harold McGee.