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How Long Do Fruits Last?

Apple

The shelf life of an apple can vary widely depending on where it is stored. For instance, a fresh, uncut apple will stay good for 1 to 3 days, but in the refrigerator an apple can last 3 to 4 weeks. If you wash, cut, cover in an ascorbic acid, like lemon juice, wrap tightly in an air-tight container and then place it in the freezer it can stay good for up to 12 months.

An unopened can of preserved apples can last even longer, up to 18 months. These cans should be kept in a cool dry environment to prevent rust and contamination.

A third way to store an apple is dry. Dried apples last up to a year in the refrigerator or the pantry and if they are frozen they can last up to 18 months. If you live in a hot and humid environment it is better to store your dried apples in the refrigerator.

Banana

Banana’s shelf life is similar to that of an apple. In the pantry a banana will remain good for 2 to 5 days. If left out it will continue to ripen and so this is the preferred place for unripe bananas. In the refrigerator a banana will stay good for up to a week. If the banana has been cut up then it should be placed in the refrigerator but it will only stay good for 3 to 4 days.

Frozen bananas last much longer of course, though with a freezer shelf-life of only 2 to 3 months it does not last as long as most fruits. To freeze a banana it needs to be peeled and mashed and placed in an airtight container. Lemon juice should be added to prevent browning.

Like apples, bananas can also be dried. A package of dried bananas will stay good for up to a year in the pantry or the refrigerator and it does not matter if the package has been opened or not. If the package is frozen it can last up to 18 months.

Grapes

Unlike apples or bananas, grapes should never be stored at room temperature. In the refrigerator grapes can be stored for about a week and in the freezer for up to 1 year. To freeze grapes you should first wash and remove the stems. Then boil 4 cups of water and 2 ¾ cups of sugar mixed well in a saucepan and pour the syrup mixture after it has cooled over the grapes and store in the freezer in an airtight container. If you want to store your grapes for even longer you can can them and they will keep for up to 18 months.

Mango

A fresh mango can be kept at room temperature for 2 to 5 days and in the refrigerator for 5 to 7 days. Like bananas, however, mangos will only ripen at room temperature and so a mango should be allowed to ripen and then placed in a plastic bag for refrigeration.

In the freezer a mango has a typical fruit shelf life of about 12 months. To freeze mangos they need to be peeled and sliced. They should then be allowed to freeze on a cookie sheet in a single layer. Once the mangos slices are frozen they can be put into an airtight bag and returned to the freezer.

About the Author: Lee Flynn is a freelance writer and expert in emergency preparedness and food storage.

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