Why Is Food Waste a Problem?
While our main passion is reducing plastic pollution, we want to dedicate this blog post to another pressing issue in our society: Food Waste.
A recent UN report estimates that 17% of produced food worldwide is thrown away. In North America that means around 880 pounds of food per person is wasted every single year.
If you want to help address this problem, we have consolidated some simple ways how you can start to reduce your food waste today!
1. Food Storage
Make sure to use the compartments in your fridge wisely:
- Store open packages and things that are about to expire on eye level
- Use the fruits and vegetables compartment to keep your produce fresh longer
- Make sure your food containers are covered or your wrap your food in a sustainable food wrap
2. Grocery Planning
A lot of food waste comes from rotten food that either got forgotten or was bought too much in the first place. A great way to reduce these food scraps is to plan your grocery list meal by meal and snack by snack.
Do you need breakfast, lunch, and dinner for all days of the week or will you have breakfast with your friends, or a social event coming up at work? Do you work from home or will you go to lunch with your colleagues?
Just thinking about the week ahead, what you want to eat, and how many meals you need, can do a great deal reducing your food waste. As a nice side effect, it also encourages you to make deliberate choices about what you eat and adopt a healthier diet.
3. Freeze Food
It is really as simple as that. Most of your food can be frozen if you keep a few things in mind. You won’t finish a cooked meal? Just freeze it for later! Have brown bananas? Freeze them for smoothies! That peanut butter jug is too big to finish? You got it, freeze it!
We would encourage you to do a quick google search, before freezing an item. Make sure you consider the food characteristics and are on the safe (and tasty) side.
4. Give Food Leftovers a Second Chance
While there are enough leftover recipes to fill a Stephen King Novel (stay tuned for a dedicated article on exactly that!), you’d be amazed what delicous meals you can cook with your leftover food.
In fact, some of the most beloved meals originate from leftovers. Remember that delicious paella you had on the beach in your last vacation? Or that creamy burrata cheese you paired to your Pinot Grigio at your favourite Italian restaurant? You’ll be amazed to know that both dishes originate from using leftovers!
5. Give Food Leftovers a Second Life
If you like gardening, you can make a whole hobby out of regrowing fruits and veggies. Some of the most convenient and fastest growing are:
- Green onions and leek: just cut them about two inches from the root and put them into a glass of water (with the top out of the water). You will be able to watch them regrow from day to day and within two to three weeks you’ll be able to reuse them.
- Lettuce: just put the stump in water and cover it halfway. Once you see a couple of inches regrown, plant it into a pot of soil. You can do that with any type of lettuce.
- Herbs: a lot of herbs regrow the same way. Just leave around 3–4 inches of stem and put them into a glass of water. As soon as you see roots, transfer them into a pot of soil. You can do that with parsley, mint, cilantro and pretty much any other green herb.
- Carrots: did you know that carrot greens make for delicious pesto, sauteed side dish or salad? If you want to regrow them, just cut around one inch below the root top and place the carrots on some wet newspaper. Make sure to keep the paper wet and you will soon see the greens growing. Once you see roots sprouting from the carrot, place it in a pot of soil and watch your majestic plant grow.
We hope you enjoyed this article. If you want to read more like this, make sure to check out our blog and follow us on Instagram. If you are interested in more sustainable eco swops, check out our shop.