Store Your Produce — and More of It — without Refrigeration

The traditional root cellar gets a modern makeover. Could it help solve your cold storage issues?

If you’re looking for a “cool” place to store your garden’s bounty, you may want to check out the Groundfridge, a modern-day take on the traditional root cellar.

A product of Dutch design firm Weltevree, the Groundfridge — a prefabricated root cellar that is buried in the ground — doesn’t require any electricity. It uses the insulating properties of the earth to keep food cool.

“It meets the requirements of people with their own vegetable garden, who choose to live in a modern and self-sustaining way,” the Weltevree website explains.

The Groundfridge, which weighs about 600 pounds, maintains a constant temperature of about 10 degrees Celsius or 45 to 59 degrees Fahrenheit, so it’s not quite as cool as a typical refrigerator. But it’s spacious. It has the same amount of room inside as six modern American fridges (or 20 smaller European models). Weltevree said it’s big enough to hold the harvest of a 3,000-square-foot garden.

“Just open the hatch door, pass through the bathtub-shaped portal and descend down a short flight of stairs and into the cellar proper to fetch — or store — whatever you need,” Mother Nature Network said.

There’s no word yet on the cost of the Groundfridge, although Weltevree said it should be available to consumers starting this summer.

Installation of the Groundfridge seems fairly simple. It does require you to dig a pretty big hole to put it in, but the displaced dirt is then used to cover it up.

This may also be a more economical (in the long run) and environmentally conscious solution to having a second fridge, which wastes a huge amount of money and electricity.

Of course, if you need cold storage and you don’t want to spend a lot of money, you could always build your own root cellar. Inhabitat.com has some tips on creating a DIY backyard root cellar.

What do you think of the Groundfridge? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

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