With his parents' fruit and veg store the backdrop of Thanh Truong's childhood, the 35-year-old fruiterer is well-versed on the best ways to make fresh produce last longer — with the most impactful change costing nothing at all.
"None of us have been taught how to store fruit and vegetables," the expert known as the Fruit Nerd told Yahoo News Australia. "How we store our fruit and veg will go a long way to saving our food and our budgets."
However, the Melbourne-based content creator, and now author, believes money can be saved by simply learning how to store fruit and veg — which will in turn save the 30 per cent of food which ends up wasted in Australia.
"As a fruiterer there is nothing more that I dislike than to see fruit and veg be wasted," he said.
Respect each fruit and vegetable for the different produce they are
"I always see fruit and veg as alive and I think that's the number one rule," Thanh said.
Being mindful that fresh produce is grown, ripens and rots is a key mentality factor which will enable consumers to be mindful that each fruit and veg thrives in different conditions and should be stored accordingly.
"It's a very commoditised product and we often see it as packaging, but if we see it as alive we will treat it differently... We can slow the rate in which it ripens so you can help it last longer."
Thanh says the "majority" of fruit and veg are made up of more than 90 per cent of water, and this is a factor which should be considered, especially in Australia's hot climates.
Ditch the fruit bowl, says Fruit Nerd
Despite the humble fruit bowl being a staple in kitchens for decades, Thanh believes they are "outdated" and causing more bad than good for your wallet.
"It's starting to rot, there are fruit flies buzzing around and there's juice at the bottom," he said. "I really advocate to have just two fruit plates, or three, and separate your fruit because it's going to slow down the respiration rate ... The airflow is bad in a fruit bowl."
Using different plates and placing them away from one another could save Aussies "two to three days worth of extra time" to eat their fresh produce.
Thanh — known as 'The Fruit Nerd' online — has over 80 thousand followers on social media and has recently released a book called Don’t Buy Fruit and Veg Without Me!
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