Use a few small chest freezers and an organized list for ultimate freezer efficiency and energy savings.
We have a bountiful garden and freeze a lot of our produce. We also go to local farms to pick large quantities of fruit for freezing. Rather than use one upright freezer that would often be only partially filled and lose cold air every time it’s opened, we purchased two small chest freezers. Starting in early summer, we turn on one freezer and gradually fill it up. When it’s full, we turn on the second and fill it. Midwinter, when we’ve eaten our way halfway through each, we consolidate the food into one freezer and turn off the other. By late spring we’re usually only using our refrigerator freezer.
We keep track of what’s in each freezer by using a dry-erase marker to draw a cross on each freezer’s door, and then we make a list in each quadrant that specifies the food’s availability and location inside the freezer.