TT: Storing Bananas

Storing bananas

Storing bananas

We buy bananas by huge batches when we go shopping. We eat them everyday and so does Rocky, so a large quantity of bananas are required at OHC HQ. I separate them out and store them in different locations all over the house. Scott assumed I was “smoking something” and thought the idea was crazy. I told him bananas make themselves and other fruits ripen at an accelerated rate if kept bunched together. Apparently I was crazy talking.

Literally after years of doing this, he exclaimed to me one day about an article he found that suggested storing bananas in separate batches to slow down the ripening process. “You don’t say?”, I replied. “I guess you aren’t crazy after all!”, he said to me.

Nope, I’m not crazy. Bananas are a fruit that produces high amounts of ethylene (C2H4) gas. This gas accelerates the ripening process of fruits and vegetables. It accelerates it so much that the fruit quickly starts to rot and become inedible before you have a chance to eat it. I have also come across theories that suggest the reason early sailors and pirates suffered from scurvy was because of bananas. They had plenty of fresh produce but they stored that along with bananas not knowing that bananas speed up the ripening process. Which caused the produce to spoil and was tossed before they got a chance to use it. Thus, they didn’t get the required amount of Vit. C and therefore suffered the consequences of scurvy.

The solution is to store bananas (and other ethylene producing produce) away from those that are not high producers of the gas. And it also means to keep bananas away from other bananas, because they have the same result on themselves. I typically store my bananas in batches of threes or fours in different spots around the house. I keep them away from stone fruits (which are super responsive to the gas) and away from veggies, such as tomatoes and peppers, that I store on my counters.

The ideal solution is to be able to hang the bananas up via a banana holder to help air circulation so that the bananas don’t start to over ripen on their own. But just storing them away from each other is a good start to keeping them and other produce from taking a nasty turn quickly.

Link on ethylene gas

10 thoughts on “TT: Storing Bananas

  1. I’m always trying to get my bananas to get overripe quickly so I have an excuse to make banana bread!! It’s a good excuse … and I loves me some banana bread. I found a recipe that is quick and easy… and of course I had to mess with it a bit to get it just right.

  2. Gina, I need to get more but when I look for them they are all expensive! Why would I pay $20 for a banana hanger?! Sometimes I think I should just make one. :p

    Brenda, Ha! At least bananas are good for you, so it’s not a terrible habit to have. :D

  3. wow, this is some very useful information! I have the problem of bananas going bad all the time, and storing them on a rack I thought was just for looks!

  4. I was not aware of that…..

    Oh, and the tea tastes great (i dont add sugar or anything) and seems to make me drowsy, so I giuess for all intents and purposes it works….

    It’s still in the learning stages tho…..


  5. I knew bananas make other fruit ripen quicker, but I didn’t realize that you should separate them to keep them from ripening each other. (i like em sorta green) Thanks for the tip – I might be putting a banana in each room… =)

  6. I’m SO glad you commented on my blog, otherwise I don’t think I would have ever found your blog and I love it!

    I’ve added you to my bloglines and need to catch up with your archives.

    Thanks for commenting, now I have a new read. :)

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