Top Tips To Reduce Food Waste & Save Money:
It is reported that a third of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted. There are a few things you can do to reduce food waste and here are a few tips. If everyone followed suit there would be a vast reduction in food waste ending up in landfills each year.
Plan your meals- Before heading to the shops you should prepare a in depth list of what you need. Go through the cupboards, check dates and create a meal plan that utilises the food you already have readily available. This not only reduces your shopping bill but it also reduces the chances of over-buying and waste.
Shop smart- Be smart about the way you shop and realistic about what you need for the days ahead. Buy the fruit or vegetables that look a funny shape but that are perfectly edible as people generally reach for the pretty food. Don’t bring the whole family and be strict about the list in your hand. Allow yourself two allowances to buy a treat or a special offer; if it will be used.
Be strict about portion control and eat leftovers- Be mindful of portion sizes, see our portion size guide here. Keep it in the dish and if someone does want more they can go back for it.
Store food safely- Storing your food safely will reduce the chances of the food going off. Invest in Tupperware and leave space in your fridge for food that hasn’t been eaten. Consider labelling to note dates and keep tracks of the food leftover in the fridge. See our tops tips for 11 foods you should not store in your fridge and our top tips on storing fruit and veg.
Rotate your food and stock in cupboards- Treat the food in your home like a restaurant would and rotate your stock and check dates etc. It only takes a minute but keeping an eye will greatly reduce the chances of binning previously good groceries.
Donate to foodbanks- If you do have a family occasion or event and find you have over-bought or over-baked/cooked do the honourable thing and drop the excess food into food banks or local charities.
Share food if you have too much- If donating food isn’t an option, if you live away from food banks etc. Give the food to a neighbour or send family who visit home with food. Anyone is delighted with food that is already prepared!
Keep a food record- For a week place a whiteboard next to the fridge and keep notes on what is going in the bin and it will shock you into action by the end of the week. The buns the kids bin after licking icing off them or the dinner no one ate because they had a big lunch earlier should all be listed so you can manage the waste more efficiently in the future.
Consider composting, pickling, stock making– Potato peelings are great for composting and even if you aren’t a gardener type you will find someone who is easily! Make pickles with veggies and make stocks out of leftover meats.
Get everyone involved- Whoever lives in your household should be aware that you are trying to reduce waste at home. Get everyone on board and ask them to respect the new rules regarding food waste.
These little changes will have an impact on the environment we live in and we should all do our bit to reduce food waste.