From Shari in California


I live in a hot and  humid area and Its a hit and miss, with food going bad and not knowing what to purchase first.  Ugh!  Can you give me some insight.  We have 3 in our family (5 year old boy)  I have so many questions, I don’t know where to begin.  Even trying to find in our home to store things because of the heat.  Do you have suggestions.


I do know a thing or two about heat, Shari!  I was born in Phoenix and have lived here most of my life.  When it comes to food, here’s the Golden Rule.  Keep it as cool as you possibly can.  For every 10 degrees that it’s stored above 70 degrees, you lose YEARS of shelf life.  I suggest storing your food in one central location, preferably a small room, and then purchasing a dehumidifier that you can run on days when it’s really humid, but your real challenge is the heat.  If you can, buy a portable AC and plan on keeping that room cooler than the rest of the house on the hottest days.

OR, store your food in all the other rooms, if you generally keep your house fairly cool, say, below 80 degrees in the summer.  Not many houses in California and Arizona have basements, but if you do, or if you have the chance to buy a house with a basement, that’s ideal.

NEVER store food in buildings, rooms, or garages that are not insulated.  What you can do is store your non-food items in the attic, out in the barn, and in similar places as long as they are products that don’t care what the temperature is, such as toilet paper.  That can open up more space indoors, which is a better location for food.

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