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Why You Must Not Refrigerate Organic Food

Explore the effects of refrigeration on organic food items

Newsweek AMPLIFY -  Why You Must Not

Fridges make our lives simple. More often than not, you find yourself freezing and refrigerating all kinds of food, sometimes for days on end. But when it comes to organic food, you should give the cold storage a second thought if you want your food to retain flavor and freshness.

Consumers looking for organically grown food can count on Thrive Market to deliver the best. However, whether the freshness and quality of such food items will be retained or not may depend on your choice to refrigerate.

Thrive Market delivers all kinds of food on order, offering both organic and Non-GMO food products such as certified organic, vegan, paleo, Non-GMO project verified and dairy-free foods, all shipped to residential and commercial places around the U.S. Most orders often arrive within two to three business days.

What Distinguishes Organic Food

There is a huge difference between organic food and conventionally grown food. Organic food is grown under natural methods of agriculture without the use of synthetic fertilizers. Alternatively, they can be processed from organically produced raw materials.

Growing health concerns among various consumers have led to the increased consumption of organic foods. This has led to its popularity in the market place.

Organic farming can improve soil quality and the conservation of groundwater. It also minimizes environmental pollution and may be better for the improvement of the natural surroundings. Many people prefer to purchase the organic kind of these foods: fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy products, and meat.

In modern days, many companies process natural products and make them available in the marketplace, for example, cookies and breakfast cereals. Organic foods generally contain higher levels of antioxidants and specific nutrients including vitamin C, zinc, and iron.

Organic plants produce more of their protective compounds, namely antioxidants, to protect themselves from pests. They also have lower levels of nitrates by 30% compared to non-organic foods. Organic milk and dairy products may contain higher percentages of omega-3 fatty acids and slightly greater amounts of iron, vitamin E, and some carotenoids, however, organic milk may contain less selenium and iodine than non-organic milk. These two minerals are crucial for health.

Organic meat contains heightened levels of omega-3 fatty acids and slightly lower levels of saturated fats than conventional beef. These two organic products contain essential minerals that have a lot of health benefits, such as a reduced risk of heart disease to consumers.

It's common to see organic food stores providing consumers with a variety of vegetarian alternatives. Vegetarian preparedness pail by Survive2Thrive, for instance, is the most perfect, nutrient-dense, and very affordable type. It is purely an organic Vegetarian Emergency Food Storage product in Thrive Market. It can sustain several meal servings for a few days. Thrive Market ensures that all of the ingredients within this emergency food storage bucket are vegetarian and also USDA Organic.

Pros and Cons of Refrigerating Organic and Regular Foods

Since producers of organic food items do not use additives or preservatives, the aim is to preserve their state and freshness.

Most conventional food products have to be frozen or refrigerated within two hours of being out. When food is frozen, the bacteria don't die, but refrigeration slows them down. Food can still spoil even if it is kept in a fridge at an appropriate temperature. In a freezer, food should be kept at or below freezing. Cold storage of food works by slowing or even stopping the molecules of bacteria.

Food storage at cold temperatures slows the growth of microorganisms, thereby limiting food poisoning while preserving food's nutritional qualities and good taste. The phytonutrients in honey produce antioxidants as well as antibacterial and antifungal power.

They are also thought to be the reason why raw honey has shown immune-boosting and anticancer benefits. Heavy processing destroys these valuable nutrients. It is hard for bacteria to grow in honey, so it cannot quickly get spoiled. This gives it indefinite shelf life. Cooler temperatures promote and speed up the crystallization of liquid honey.

Organic Food Items Not to Refrigerate

All in all, the following organic foods should not be refrigerated;

  • Avocados – they should be stored at room temperature until they ripen and only refrigerate leftover after cutting to preserve for a few days.
  • Onions – the cold storage suck up their moisture and spoil their texture. Once sliced, it's advisable to store in airtight containers in the fridge to prevent molding.
  • Garlic – spread them around in the pantry with room for flowing air and they will last weeks.
  • Tomatoes – they soften and lose flavor and may never ripen if stored raw. These can also be refrigerated after cutting.
  • Bananas – unripe bananas will never ripen so room temperature is preferable. If stored in the fridge, let them be in a bag inside the freezer.
  • Stone Fruit – cold fridge temperature dehydrates them so room temperature is preferable, otherwise store in an airtight container if you must refrigerate.
  • Uncut melons – their hard exterior is good at normal room temperature but after cutting, put in the fridge.
  • Oil – solid oil loses flavor and heat also makes them go rancid, so try a cold, dry dark place.
  • Potatoes – they lose flavor. Most varieties do well in warm storage inside a bag
  • Bread – these become hard and cold in the fridge, store in a cool, dry place, and eat within a week.
  • Coffee – refrigeration alters the flavor of ground and coffee beans, they are better off in their tightly sealed containers.
  • Winter squashes – these can last for weeks sitting somewhere in the pantry without going bad.

Organic foods are mostly produced by means that conform to the standards of organic farming. These standards vary from one place to another, however, organic farming comprises practices that entail resource recycling, promotion of ecological balance, and conservation of biodiversity. Many individuals hold the view that organic food is safer, healthier, and tastier than regular food. They also say it is important for the surrounding and animal well-being.

These foods are usually grown without the use of artificial chemicals, hormones, antibiotics, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Growth of organic plant food tends to utilize natural fertilizers such as manure to improve plant growth. The natural rearing of animals ensures that they are not given antibiotics or hormones.

Organic foods such as fruits and vegetables contain important vitamins, minerals, plant chemicals, and fiber. There are a variety of fruits and vegetables available and different ways to prepare, cook, and serve them. A diet full of fruits and vegetables can help the body to be immune to cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

What Refrigerating Organic Foods Cost You

Loss of Flavor

Organic fruits and vegetables with higher water content will become icy once refrigerated. They will, therefore, turn soggy instead of maintaining their crispy state. This will cause your food to lose its taste.

Denaturing

Refrigerating organic foods locks them up with bacteria and microorganisms. In return, once removed from the fridge, the bacteria and microorganisms overwhelm the essential minerals that were in the whole foods. Cold temperatures break down starches in potatoes.

Once some organic fruits and vegetables hit the refrigerators, they can lose as much as 50 percent of the Vitamin C within time depending on the temperature.

Environmentally Unfriendly

Organic products are produced by agriculturists who insist on the use of renewable sources to enhance the environmental quality for safe consumption. Refrigeration is not eco-friendly due to the chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) content. This fact goes against the very nature and definition of organic foods.

Alternative Preservation Methods for Organic Foods

Sun-drying constitutes reservations of organic foods. Sunlight will not only dry the excess moisture but also the UV rays will eliminate microorganisms. This translates to longer shelf life. This method also ensures that the foods' taste is retained upon reconstitution.

Some organic farmers contemplate the use of organic transient cool storage to reduce fluctuation of humidity that affects storage life. Pack your organic foods in air-tight PVC lined aluminum foils to protect its freshness

Once packed in these bags, organic foods should be frozen to retain their original freshness longer. Freezing prevents fungal and microbial activity in organic foods. Research by USDA discovered that storage at room temperature helps to keep the antioxidants within.

Organic food grains in large quantities can also be exposed to nuclear radiation which kills microorganisms. In India, Bhaba Atomic Research has developed techniques for exposing organic foods to the radiation. This is important for longer shelf life to assist in mass production.

Non-organic foods are produced with the use of man-made fertilizers. This way, their preservation requires less attention than organic foods. Therefore, when bulking up on food items, purchase as many organic foods as you can handle at a given time, to prevent wastage.

While refrigeration may be a preferred choice, organic foods need to retain their flavor and nutritional value. Therefore, when buying organic, you might want to consider natural preservation with freezing as a last resort. Regardless of your preference and taste, Thrive Market stocks fresh and healthy natural and organic foods that can provide you with all the nutritional values you need.

Join and order easy at Thrive Market and stand a chance to save an average of $32 on every order you make.

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