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Tips On How To Reduce Food Waste
Did you know that the UK throws around 9.5 million tonnes of food away in just one year? Many factors contribute to this, including overbuying, overproduction, and spoilage. In a world where millions of people go hungry every day, it is essential that we all make changes to help reduce food waste.
Food waste is not just a humanitarian problem, it is an environmental issue too. Whenever we waste food, we waste the energy and materials spent on growing, harvesting, transporting, and packaging. As food rots in landfills, it emits greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.
Here are some ways you can reduce food waste:
1. Keep your shopping to a minimum
Keep track of what you need, you can do this by making a list or taking a "shelfie" of your fridge/cupboard shelf to remember what you already have. Try to avoid impulse buys, the extra savings will help you save money, as well as reduce food waste!
2. Plan ahead
When you shop, try to plan with specific meals in mind. By creating a meal plan for the week, you will save money and time! Check to see what you already have at home to make up these meals before you go shopping.
3. Utilise your leftovers
If you have any leftovers, freeze them and use them another time. By naming and dating your leftovers, you can keep track of what needs to be used first. You can even use leftovers to get creative in the kitchen and create a new meal the very next day!
4. Make your freezer your best friend
Freezing food can help reduce your food waste as it preserves them for a longer period of time, so if you have some vegetables that are about to spoil, stick them in the freezer! BBC goodfood has some handy tips on what foods you can freeze, for more information click here.
5. Put your waste to good use
With food waste that is unavoidable instead of throwing them away, compost them. This will reduce your carbon footprint whilst giving back nutrients to the soil - this can also be really handy if you love to garden!
Many of us have had a food caddy provided by our local councils, for information on how to use them click here. Once your food waste is collected, it is often used as a soil improver, which reduces the use of fertilisers on farms.
6. How to store food
To make sure you are not wasting any food, you should keep older products at the front of your fridge/cupboard. Make sure you check labels on how they should be stored and whether they are "use by" or "best before". You should also check that your appliances are at the recommended temperatures as this will help reduce waste too.
Airtight containers can help keep food fresh for longer rather than ordinary packaging. Did you know that if you keep the stems of vegetables such as broccoli in water they will stay fresh for longer?
7. Measure your portions
You can help reduce your waste by taking away guesswork and measuring only what you need. This will reduce the chance of food waste and portion control.
Why not try a new way to cook with HelloFresh? Everything included in their recipe boxes comes pre-portioned which means everything ends up on your plate! Did you know that HelloFresh customers waste 21% less food than those buying from supermarkets? What's even better is when you go through Give as you Live Online, you'll also raise a FREE donation for your favourite charity!
8. Donate instead of waste
9. Don't judge food based on appearance
Misshapen, marked and oddly sized fruits and vegetables are often thrown away before leaving the farm. This is because they don't meet marketplace standards but looks aren't everything, they will still taste the same! You can help make a difference by picking slightly imperfect produce at your grocery store, or better yet, directly from small businesses or local farmers.
If you prefer shopping online for your food, Approved Food specialise in surplus and short-dated stock, food that is either near/ just passed its 'best before' date, all at discount prices! Approved Food shoppers save around £60 on their monthly shopping compared to high street prices. That's over a whopping £700 per year you too could be saving! You can also raise free donations for your favourite charity when you shop through Give as you Live Online!
10. Support local farmers/businesses
When you buy local produce you're not only supporting your community but also helping to fight transport pollution. A lot of good food gets wasted due to cosmetic standards and inflexible contracts with supermarkets so buying directly from your community is important.
There are many ways you can reduce, reuse and recycle your food waste. Our tips are just the beginning to help prevent food waste whilst saving you money and time!
What is Give as you Live Online?
Give as you Live Online is a FREE online fundraising platform that has raised over £23 million for UK charities just through online shopping. There are over 6,000 stores listed and over 200,000 charities available to support. Sign up, click through Give as you Live Online and raise free donations whenever you shop!
Offers, donation rates and participating stores are correct at the time of writing and are subject to change. Please visit the Give as you Live Online website for the most up to date information.
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