Heath Shoup Vice President of Sales and Product Management is an expert in foodservice operations & avocado handling best practices. He advises food business owners and professionals on how to optimize the premium quality of avocados for their patrons. To achieve this, he recommends following these straightforward storage and handling practices:
1. Handling & Storage
Our avocado ripening experts have already begun ripening the fruit to your designated stage of ripeness.
- Bring your avocado delivery inside immediately, and do not store it near the fryer, as heat will destroy the quality of the fruit.
- When stacking boxes, place those with ripe avocados on top.
- Store ripe avocados at 38-42 degrees to slow ripening and avoid cooler damage.
2. Ripe & Ready to Serve
Inspect avocados for ripeness daily by squeezing gently to feel for uniform softness.
- If the avocado yields to gentle pressure, it’s ripe and ready to eat.
- If the avocado does not yield to gentle pressure, it is considered still “firm” and should remain at room temperature to ripen.
- If the avocado feels mushy or very soft to the touch, it may be very ripe to overripe-a perfect candidate for guacamole or smoothies.
Quick Tip: Refrigerate avocados only after they are ripe; that way, they will stay fresh and ready to serve at the peak of ripeness for several days.
3. Avocados Freshness
After being sliced open and as they are exposed to air, avocados will naturally oxidize and turn brown over time. Here’s how to keep your cut avocados looking their naturally yellow-green hue.
- Sprinkle the cut, mashed, or sliced fruit with lemon or lime juice or another acidic agent.
- Place in an air-tight container or tightly cover with clear plastic wrap.
- Refrigerate for up to one day, then use.
4. Size Switching for Recipes Needs
Naturally, avocados harvest at various sizes. This flexibility allows you to switch sizes for your specific recipe needs. From jumbo to small, any size fruit can yield the amount of pulp you need. For example, 1 size 36 avocado yields the same 1 1/3 cup of diced avocado flesh as 2 size 70 avocados.
Looking for more avo-hacks for your foodservice needs? Reach out to your West Pak Avocado sales rep here.