London, UK – 16 December 2020 – While lockdown drew more attention to the weekly shop than ever before, new research from Samsung shows that the nation is conflicted over where to store common kitchen staples – in the fridge or on the counter – which is contributing to thousands of pounds of food being wasted in households every year.
Fruits prove at high risk of waste with most people storing pears (55%), apples (64%) and oranges (66%) incorrectly, as well as eggs (37%), all of which are being stored on the counter when storing in the fridge preserves them for longer.
The research found a shocking 42% of the food Brits buy is thrown away, meaning £2,675 winds up in the bin each year.
The data showed that fresh herbs (52%), ready meals (46%), and sauces/condiments (45%) were the categories with the largest amount of waste.
Surprisingly, expensive convenience items such as ready meals, products that are largely designed to be frozen then cooked, are being stored in the fridge, taking up valuable space but are then wasted. Wastage of items like ketchup could be down to two reasons; people are divided over where to store it, with half (50%) keeping it out of the fridge. While it can be stored in the cupboard when unopened, once opened it should be placed in the fridge. But also sauces and condiments can often block visibility which can lead to people making duplicate purchases, but understanding storage recommendations can help people reduce waste and optimise their space.
In considering how to avoid waste, almost half of people (48%) think a better food organisation system would help them reduce their food waste and three in five (58%) think their food would last longer if they stored it correctly.
That’s where Samsung thinks it can lend a helping hand. With a range of powerful technologies such as No Frost and Optimal Fresh+ that preserve food at ideal conditions, Samsung’s new RB7300 refrigerator is designed to preserve and lock in the freshness of even highly perishable items—helping customers enjoy food for longer.
The data also found some of the most common reasons for household food waste are forgetting items are in the fridge (26%), not checking expiration dates (29%) and not planning meals ahead of shopping (29%).
Customers looking to store more but without accidently forgetting food hidden away in a packed fridge will enjoy Samsung’s SpaceMax Technology as it makes the walls slimmer so the same size fridge on the outside has larger capacity inside.
Food Storage Guide For Longevity
Where it should be stored
Out of the fridge
In a bid to combat food waste and help educate consumers on how to increase the shelf life of their fridge items, Samsung has created a series of simple tips on how to organise your fridge to reduce food waste and help items last longer.
Tailor your fridge to your needs. There’s always one tall bottle or a container of leftovers that won’t quite fit as you’d like. And removing shelves is a pain. Samsung’s Slide & Fold Shelves can be easily folded up, raised and lowered to create the best fit for all your groceries, so nothing gets left out on the side.
Not all fruit and veg were created equally, so it’s important they are stored in a way to maintain freshness for longer. Some fruits and vegetables, such as avocados, peaches and melon should be stored out of the fridge before they ripen, but put into the fridge once they’re ripe to prevent wastage.
To maintain an even temperature inside your fridge, look for models that include No Frost technology, not only will your food stay fresher for longer, but this will also prevent ice-build up, saving you the hassle of defrosting and keeping your fridge frost-free.
It’s not just about temperature, humidity matters too, so make use of your fridge drawers. If possible, look to use drawers that allow you to adjust the settings, depending on your fresh fruit and veg needs so they stay crisp and not soggy. After all, no one wants a wilted lettuce!
Always store raw meat, poultry and fish on the lower shelf of the refrigerator and keep it wrapped up. This will help prevent food smells from spreading and also any juices from dripping onto other foods, increasing the risk of cross-contamination and leading to additional food waste. Samsung’s Optimal Fresh+ zone allows you to store meats alongside fruit or veg safely for longer. The slider allows airflow to be controlled, so temperature can then be set from 0 to 3 degrees. This small variation, makes a big difference to freshness of meat, fruits and vegetables. Optimal Fresh+ provides two temperature zones in one easy to use compartment, with a flexible divider that can be moved easily to make either space larger or smaller depending on your needs.
Nick Bevan, Head of Product Management at Samsung Electronics UK Ltd said: “A forgotten vegetable at the bottom of the fridge drawer is a common sight in our homes, yet a few small changes could make this a thing of the past. Simply knowing where food items belong and re-organising our fridges are small things that can help tackle the big problem of food waste in the UK.
“Consider how best to use the space in your fridge and what features you can make the most of to keep your food lasting fresh for longer. Things like the RB7300’s multi-functional Rack & Shelf which helps to reduce any dead space in the fridge and store more items more effectively can make all the difference.
“If you have limited kitchen space then Samsung’s SpaceMax Technology is perfect as the slimmer walls mean the same size fridge on the outside has larger capacity inside”.
While two thirds (66%) of Brits feel guilty for the amount they waste and over half (51%) more aware of their food waste due to lockdown restrictions, only 56% have a plan in place to help tackle the issue at home.
The European research of 20,000 people in 11 countries revealed that Switzerland wasted the most amount of food, closely followed by Norway, Italy and France.
Head to www.samsung.com/uk/explore/food-home/four-simple-tips-for-better-fridge-management/ for more information on how to organise your fridge and tackle food waste.
 WRAP’s A-Z of food storage guide for increasing longevity of items.