Go for a colorful rainbow of fresh, frozen, canned, and dried.

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Prioritize items that are reduced sodium or no salt added, when possible.


  • Examples: cabbage, celery, cucumber, leafy greens, onion, potatoes, squash, and peppers.
  • Try to obtain seasonal:
    • Celery, cucumbers, onion, summer squash, and peppers are great options in the summer!
    • Cabbage, potatoes, onions, winter squash, and leafy greens are perfect in the fall.
    • Spinach, lettuce, kale, collards, and mustard greens are best in the winter and spring.
  • Prioritize vegetables that last longer, if waste is a concern.
    • Carrots, onions, potatoes, squash all last weeks to months, if properly stored.


  • Examples: broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, collards, corn, green beans, peas, spinach, and sweet potatoes.
  • Prioritize vegetables with no added salt, sugar, or sauces.


  • Examples: beets, carrots, collards, corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas, green beans, spinach, tomatoes, and pumpkin.
  • Prioritize vegetables with no added salt.


  • Examples: black eyed peas, black beans, great northern beans, peas, pinto beans, kidney beans, and lentils.
  • These can go in the vegetable or protein section.
    • These are vegetables that are also great sources of protein. If you are limited in the number of animal proteins you have, these are wonderful options for your guests to get this essential nutrient.
  • Prioritize no salt added.

Stocking Vegetables

Organize your vegetables by like items. Separate items with low or no added sodium.  This will make it easier for your neighbors to choose things like no salt added cans if that is important to them and it will also help you visually see when you are low in inventory.

If you are concerned about fresh produce being wasted, remove limits on how much a neighbor can take. If that doesn’t work, change the amount of fresh ordered and add in more frozen, canned, or dried items with a longer shelf life.

Check your understanding.

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