Fighting Food Waste

Fighting Food Waste

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We have shared a lot recently about reducing our plastic waste – using reusable cups, Tupperware and avoiding products wrapped in single-use plastic at the supermarket, but what about the food itself?

As well as an economic and social problem, food waste is a huge contributor to greenhouse gas emissions because, when food is wasted, all the energy and resources that went into creating that food are wasted too. That’s the energy and water it takes to grow, harvest and transport the food as well as any packaging. In addition, when wasted food goes to landfill and rots it produces methane which is a far more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide.

It is estimated that one-third of all food produced in the world goes to waste. This food waste occurs throughout the supply chain – food might be spoilt before harvesting, or wasted because of changing demands from shops and consumers. Some of this might all feel a bit out of our control, but there is plenty that we can do as individuals.

  • Use an app to save or share surplus foods – there are various apps aiming to help tackle food waste by connecting those with surplus food with those who will eat it! Try Too Good To Go for restaurant food at discounted prices. OLIO allows you to upload pictures of your unwanted food and neighbours nearby can collect it - a great idea for anything you might have left over before you go on holiday.
  • Buy wonky veg! There has been plenty reported about mountains of ‘wonky’ fruit and veg going to waste because it doesn’t meet supermarkets’ standards. By changing our buying habits we can save this veg! Look for the wonky veg in shops or try a veg box scheme such as OddBox.
  • Plan your shopping: one of the biggest changes we can probably all make is to plan our meals and only buy what we need. This is one of the best ways to make sure that all the food in the fridge is actually needed and will get used. And if our plans change and we don’t use it see if any of those leftovers can be frozen for another day.
  • And not forgetting the office … make sure the fresh fruit in the kitchen in the office gets eaten! Check the fridge if there’s nothing on the side – it might be in there to help it last a little longer.