topkatz produce logo          Fresh Produce Storage and Handling Guide

Commodity Optimal Storage Temperature Degrees F/C Chill Point Degrees F/C Optimal Humidity % Top Ice Water Sprinkle Produces Ethylene Sensitive to Ethylene Remarks
                 
BANANAS mature green 62-70 / 17-21 56 / 13 85-95 No No Yes-Low Yes  
BANANAS ripe 56-60 / 13-16 54 / 12 85-95 No No Yes-Medium No  
COCONUTS 55-60 / 13-16 ----- 80-85 No No No No For extended storage or transit, store at 32-35Deg. F (0-2Deg. C).
EGGPLANT 50-55 / 10-13 45 / 7 85-95 No No No Yes  
GINGER ROOT 60-65 / 16-18 55 / 13 65-70 No No No No  
GRAPEFRUIT 55-60 / 13-16 50 / 10 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
LEMONS 52-55 / 11-13 50 / 10 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
LIMES 48-55 / 9-13 45 / 7 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
MANGOES 50-55 / 10-13 50 / 10 85-95 No No Yes-Medium Yes  
MELONS Casaba/Persian 50-55 / 10-13 45 / 7 85-95 No No Yes-Very Low Yes Riper melons may be stored at 45-50Deg. F (7-10Deg. C).
MELONS Crenshaw 50-55 / 10-13 45 / 7 85-95 No No Yes-Low Yes Riper melons may be stored at 45-50Deg. F (7-10Deg. C).
MELONS Honeydew 50-55 / 10-13 41 / 5 85-95 No No Yes-Medium Yes Riper melons may be stored at 45-50Deg. F (7-10Deg. C).
OKRA 50-55 / 10-13 45 / 7 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low Yes  
PAPAYAS 50-55 / 10-13 45 / 7 85-95 No No Yes-Medium Yes  
PINEAPPLES 50-55 / 10-13 45 / 7 85-95 No No Yes-Very Low No Odor may pass to avocados; keep seperated.
PUMPKINS 55-59 / 13-15 50 / 10 65-70 No No No Yes  
SQUASH hard shell 55-59 / 13-15 50 / 10 65-70 No No No Yes  
SWEET POTATOES 58-65 / 14-18 54 / 12 85-90 No No No Yes  
TOMATOES mature green 65-72 / 18-22 55 / 13 85-95 No No Yes-Low Yes To delay ripening, store at 55-60Deg. F (13-16Deg. C).
TOMATOESripe 55-60 / 13-16 50 / 10 85-95 No No Yes-Medium No Always display at room temperature.
WATERMELON 55-70 / 13-21 50 / 10 85-95 No No No Yes Extremely sensitive to ethylene; exposure will cause softening of flesh. Keep away from ethylene-producing fruits and ripening rooms
                 
AVOCADOS unripe 45-50 / 7-10 45 / 7 85-95 No No Yes-Low Yes Extremely sensitive to ethylene; exposure may increase symptoms of chill damage.
AVOCADOS ripe 38-45 / 3-7 36 / 2 85-95 No No Yes-High Yes  
CRANBERRIES 38-42 / 3-6 36 / 2 90-95 No No No No  
CANTALOUPE 36-38 / 2-3 34 / 1 90-95 OK No Yes-Medium Yes  
CUCUMBERS 45-50 / 7-10 40 / 4 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low Yes  
GREEN BEANS 40-45 / 4-7 38 / 3 90-95 No No No Yes Water may promote russeting/spotting.
GUAVAS 45-50 / 7-10 40 / 4 85-95 No No Yes-Medium Yes  
LYCHEES 40-45 / 4-7 36 / 2 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
ORANGES CA / AZ 40-44 / 4-7 38 / 3 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
PEPPERS hot / chili 45-50 / 7-10 42 / 6 90-95 No No No Yes Exposure to ethylene gas will increase color change in hot peppers.
PEPPERS sweet 45-50 / 7-10 42 / 6 90-95 No No No No  
POMEGRANATES 41-50 / 5-10 41 / 5 90-95 No No No No  
POTATOES 45-50 / 7-10 38 / 3 85-90 No No No Yes  
SQUASH soft shell 45-50 / 7-10 40 / 4 90-95 No No No Yes  
TANGERINES CA / AZ 40-44 / 4-7 38 / 3 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
 
APPLES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes Some varieties (McIntosh & Yellow Newton) are chill sensitive; store at 35-40Deg. F (2-4Deg. C).
APRICOTS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes  
ARTICHOKES Globe 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No No  
ASPARAGUS 34-36 / 1-2 ----- 90-95 No OK No Yes  
BLUEBERRIES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
BOK CHOY 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No OK No Yes  
BROCCOLI 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes  
BRUSSELS SPROUTS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes  
BUNCHED GREENS beets, chard, green onions, mustard, parsley, radish, spinach, turnip 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes Green onion odor may pass to figs, grapes, mushrooms, rhubarb, and sweet corn; keep separated.
CABBAGE whole head 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes  
CARROTS topped 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes Exposure to ethylene may cause bitter flavor.
CAULIFLOWER 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No Yes  
CELERY 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes  
CHERRIES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
CHINESE PEA PODS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No No  
CORN, SWEET 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No No May pick up odor from green onions; keep separated.
ENDIVE, ESCAROLE, CHICORY 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No No  
FIGS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Low No  
GARLIC 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 65-75 No No No No May store at 55-70Deg. F (13-21Deg. C) for short period time.
GRAPES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low Yes Keep away from other commodities if grapes are packed in containers with sulfur dioxide pads.
GREEN PEAS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No Yes  
HERBS all except basil 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No OK No Yes  
HERBS basil only 52-59 / 11-15 50 / 10 90-95 No OK No Yes  
JERUSALEM ARTICHOKES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No No  
KIWIFRUIT unripe 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Low Yes Extremely sensitive to ethylene; exposure will accelerate ripening.
KIWIFRUITripe 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes  
KOHLRABI 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No No  
LEEKS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes Odor may pass to figs and grapes; keep separated.
LETTUCE all types 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No OK No Yes  
MUSHROOMS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No No May pick up odor from green onions; keep separated.
NAPA/CHINESE CABBAGE 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No OK No Yes  
NECTARINES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes Unripe fruit produces less ethylene.
ONIONS, DRY 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 65-75 No No No No May store at 55-70Deg. F (13-21Deg. C) for short period.
ORANGES FL / TX 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
PEACHES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes Unripe fruit produces less ethylene.
PEARS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes Unripe fruit produces less ethylene.
PERSIMMONS 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No Yes Extremely sensitive to ethylene; exposure will accelerate softening of flesh
PLUMS / PRUNES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes Unripe fruit produces less ethylene.
PRECUT FRUIT pineapple 32-36 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
PRECUT VEGETABLES carrots, celery, broccoli 32-36 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No Yes  
PRECUT VEGETABLES mushroom 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No No  
QUINCES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-High Yes  
RHUBARB 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No OK No No May pick up odor from green onions; keep separated.
RASPBERRIES / BLACKBERRIES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
SALAD MIXES 32-36 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No OK for Bulk No Yes  
STRAWBERRIES 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
SPROUTS alfalfa, bean 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No No Yes  
TANGERINES FL / TX 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 No No Yes-Very Low No  
TOPPED VEGETABLES beets. celeriac, parsnips, radishes, rutabagas, turnips 32-35 / 0-2 ----- 90-95 OK OK No Yes  

Optimal Storage Temperature: Ranges given are the optimal temperatures at which fruits and vegetables should be stored. Temperature ranges are given in both Fahrenheit and Celsius Degrees.
Top Ice:  Top icing is designed to enhance the freshness and shelf life of certain commodities.  Items designated with OK will benefit from top icing; however, it is not critical during short storage periods.  Items designated with No should never be top iced.
Produces Ethylene:  Many fruits give off ethylene, a natural, colorless, and odorless gas that promotes ripening.  Because different fruits give off varying amounts of ethylene, they have been designated very low, low, medium, or high producers.  Commodities that produce medium to high amounts of ethylene should be stored away from items that are sensitive to ethylene and may be damaged as a result of exposure to the gas.
Chill Point: Many fruits and vegetables are susceptible to damage if stored or displayed below their chill points(34-56Deg F / 1-13Deg C).  To avoid chill damage, do not store fruits and vegetables below their designated chill point.
Water Sprinkle: Water sprinkling is designed to enhance the freshness and shelf life of certain commodities.  Items designated with OK will benefit from sprinkling; however, it is not critical during short storage periods.  Items designated with NO should never be sprinkled.
Optimal Humidity: It is important to store and display fruits and vegetables within their optimal humidity ranges to ensure product freshness and to prevent wilting or deterioration.  Most items stored at 45Deg F(7Deg C) or above require 85-95% humidity.  Most items stored below 45Deg F(7Deg C) require 90-98% humidity.
Sensitive to Ethylene:  Some fruits and vegetables are sensitive to ethylene.  Exposure to ethylene may cause accelerated ripening, discoloration, and in some cases, product deterioration.  Commodities that are sensitive to ethylene should be stored away from commodities that produce medium to high amounts of ethylene.