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  1. 1Buy in-season, locally grown produce. In-season vegetables are cheaper because they are abundant -- and locally grown veggies taste better and last longer because they haven’t spent days in a refrigerated truck to get to your supermarket. For out-of-season vegetables, substitute flash-frozen supermarket versions.
  2. 2Don’t just grab a handful of veggies. If you take your time to choose each vegetable individually, you’ll eliminate any that could spoil the lot. Use all of your senses. You want to choose vegetables that have a bright, lively color, have a pleasing smell or aroma, smooth, unbroken skin, with no blemishes, bruises, soft spots, or moldy areas.
  3. 3Buy only the veggies you’ll use within a week. Most vegetables kept longer -- with the exception of some root vegetables -- are likely to spoil. To know what you’ll use in a week, shop with a list for sides, snacks, and main dish preparation.
  4. 4Try to grow your own vegetables. If an outdoor garden isn’t your thing, at least grow some herbs on a windowsill. Have you looked at the prices of herbs at the store lately? Or start some bean sprouts -- you’ll have your own fresh stir-fry ingredients in days.
  5. 5If you do find yourself with an oversupply of veggies about to go bad, freeze them. You can prepare them in a dish, making vegetable stock, soups, or a vegetable casserole first, and then freeze.
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