If you’re like most people, you’re not running out to buy your vegetables and fruits fresh, on a daily basis.  But you’d prefer you could make it to the end of the week without your veggies getting limp or your fruit getting brown.  Nothing bums us out more than paying good money for organic fruits and veggies, only to see them go bad.  So here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your purchases, and minimize the waste:

1. Freeze It: If you realize you’re not going to be able to eat it fresh, consider whether you can freeze it.  Slice and dice your sweet peppers and onions and freeze them for later.  The next time you work up an omelet or some fajitas, you’ll be glad you did.  Strawberries and other fruits will make great weekend smoothies and bananas will make for some delicious banana bread.

2. Keeping Things Pretty: If you’re trying to save time (and sanity) when putting out salads prior to dinner or a fruit platter before the party arrives, but worried about the fruit or veggies going prematurely brown, squeeze a little lemon on them.  The acid preserves the color for a longer period of time.

3. Wash Later, Not Now: Berries last longer if you wash them immediately prior to eating.  So don’t get over-zealous and wash all your fruit as soon as it makes its way out of your canvas shopping bag.

4. Separate: Fruits and vegetables preserve better if you store them in separate crispers.  Thus, the two crisper drawers…

5. Keep Your Lettuce Crisp: Don’t leave your lettuce in the plastic bag from the grocery store. Direct contact with plastic bags cause lettuce to go bad quickly. To preserve the life of lettuce, wrap it in a paper towel, then place it back into the plastic bags and put them in the crisper.