How to organise your fridge to make your food last longer

You may have been keeping milk in the wrong place your whole life

Rachel Hosie
Wednesday 01 March 2017 16:42

Organising your fridge correctly results in less food waste and thus more money in your pocket.

But it turns out a lot of us are doing it all wrong.

Despite what so many people do, storing your milk in the door of the fridge is probably reducing its shelf-life.

The reason, according to Good Housekeeping, is that the door is actually the warmest part of the fridge, and milk is one of the ingredients that it’s most important to keep cold.

Here’s how to order your fridge to make it most efficient:

Drawers at the bottom

Raw vegetables, salad and fruit - keep them in separate compartments as some fruits emit a gas that speeds up ripening. Don’t keep herbs and leaves at the back of the fridge though as they could actually freeze.

Bottom shelves

Sealed raw meat and fish - this is the coldest part of the fridge which keeps food fresh. Storing raw food here is also wise to prevent cross-contamination - if you keep raw food higher up there’s a risk it could drip down onto other foods.

Middle shelves

Dairy products and eggs - make sure you keep yogurt pots sealed to lock in freshness and prevent bacteria getting in.

Upper shelves

Pre-cooked foods - items that don’t need cooking like deli meats and leftovers should be stored at the top of the fridge as this is where the temperature is most consistent.


Foods with natural preservatives - the door of the fridge is where the temperature fluctuates most so it’s best to keep products like condiments, juice and preserves here. Whilst milk should not be stored here, butter and soft cheese are actually OK.

The Good Housekeeping guide also points out that it’s important to clean and thaw your fridge regularly too.

‘Gas-releasing’ fruits and vegetables (avocados, bananas, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums and tomatoes) are best kept out of the fridge to prevent premature spoiling, and you shouldn’t refridgerate bread either as it’ll dry out.

As for ketchup, the debate rages on.

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