Fighting food waste

Wednesday 27 April is ‘Stop food waste’ day. A time to be grateful for the good food we eat and reflect on how much we buy and waste.

WRAP, a global sustainability charity, communicates the importance of reducing food waste on their Love Food Hate Waste website. They highlight how your food is at its best when it’s on your plate, ready to be enjoyed. It’s perfect in your fridge, ready to be used, or stored in the freezer for another time. It’s at its worst when it’s in your bin.

Saving food can also help us save money, and it is good for the planet too, helping to slow down global warming.

WRAP states that, if global food waste were a country, it would be third largest emitter of greenhouse gases after China and the US.

In the UK alone, households waste around 6.5 million tonnes of food every year. What’s worse is that 4.5 million of that is still edible (enough to fill 90 Royal Albert Halls). This includes food left on plates and bread crusts, waste that can be avoided if we think and act a little smarter.

By making some small changes and using up every edible bit of your food, you will be playing your part in looking after the environment.

How to cut down on food waste

Plan and be super organised

  • Check the contents of your fridge, freezer, and store cupboard once a week. This will help you with your next shopping list.
  • Plan your meals each week. Don’t forget to use what you have in your cupboards.
  • Make a list before you go shopping. Have a pad and pen handy or use your smartphone.
  • Look for the longest use-by date.
  • Try to buy foods that can be frozen.
  • Save money by buying what you need, not what you want.
  • Avoid going to the supermarket when you feel hungry. You end up buying more than you need.
  • Buy loose when you can. Packaging only adds to the cost of your shopping.
  • Avoid ‘Buy one, get one free’ offers if you are not likely to eat it all.

Embrace your inner chef

Chill out with your fridge and freezer

  • If you have a busy time ahead, cook extra portions and freeze for a later date.
  • Freeze leftovers for another time.
  • Bread is one of the most likely foods to be wasted. This can be avoided by putting it in the freezer and using it for toast.
  • Don’t forget to label tubs and bags bound for the freezer with a date so that you can use them in order.
  • Make sure your fridge temperature is below 5 degrees Celcius
  • Too much milk? This can be frozen. Pour a little out for a hot drink before you freeze. This allows room in the bottle for the milk to freeze without spilling.
  • Not sure how to store something. Check out this handy A to Z Food Storage A to Z | Love Food Hate Waste

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