It is coming up to that time of the year when there are plenty of festivities, extra people to feed with all of that food, glorious food, and let’s be honest, there is a lot of food wastage. So I thought this was the perfect time to give some advice on how to limit food wastage, not just at Christmas time, but all through the year. You can practice over the coming festive season and maybe make it a new years resolution to limit food wastage in your household.
READ MORE: Sustainable Living
Limit Food Wastage
First up, here is why you should do it …
Australians throw away $5.2 billion of food every year which is up to $1000 of wasted food per household. We throw away up to 20% of our grocery shopping – can you imagine coming home and throwing out 1 in 5 bags of food you buy? And then there is the produce that is thrown away before it even reaches the shelves just because it isn’t pretty enough, up to 40% of wastage here!
All of this wastage is not just about throwing away edible and nutritious food, but there is also the waste of resources that goes into producing it. For instance 1kg of beef takes 15,000 litres of water to produce! Then there is the issue of all this waste that is sitting in our landfills producing methane gas, which is warming our planet 21 times more than carbon dioxide does.
Check out this awesome infographic from Foodwise and visit their site for a full explanation of where all the numbers and facts come from.
Now that I have shocked you with all these numbers and facts on just how much we waste every year, I want to share with you 2 simple things you can do to not only limit food wastage, but also save some money and help the environment. Are you ready for it? It is as easy as meal planning and taking stock. That’s it. Sounds simple right? That’s because it is. This is how is works.
Meal Planning & Take Stock
Plan out what meals you will cook during the week as you write your grocery list. Start by checking what you already have in your fridge and pantry so that you use what you have, before it goes bad. Remember to keep an eye on the use by dates so you don’t forget to eat it before it passes this and you have to throw it out.
Plan meals based on what you will actually be bothered to cook so you don’t end up getting take away instead of using your fresh food at home. Similarly, only buy food that is liked and will get eaten. It is all well and good to pack a healthy lunch box for your kids, but not so good if they refuse to eat it and it all ends up in the bin.
When you do go grocery shopping take a list so you don’t buy more than you need and there is truth to not shopping on an empty stomach. I’m sure everyone has experienced this one first hand at least once.
Before you cook think about how many people you will be feeding so you don’t cook too much food and if you do have leftovers, have a plan for what you can do with them. Whether it is incorporating them into another meal, having them for lunch the next day, freezing them, swapping or sharing with friends, feeding the chooks, dehydrating it, whatever it is you do with your leftover food, have a plan so it doesn’t just end up in the bin.
Maybe sit down with your family for dinner tonight and talk about how your food got from field to fork and how much food your family wastes. Then come up with a plan for how you might be able to limit food wastage in your home.
Have you ever been shopping on an empty stomach?
What do you do with your leftovers?
What would you spend your $1000 a year on?Love it. Follow me. . .