11 Ways To Actively Reduce Food Wastage
There are simple steps each of us can take to reduce food wastage and in turn, save money each month. Reduce food wastage in your own home with these easy steps:
1. Shop smart and realistically
It sounds simple, but this is one of the most important things you can do. When you go food shopping, make sure you don't buy too much food. This may mean going to the grocery store more often and buying less food each time. You should also try to purchase locally sourced produce from places like your local farmer's market. You know what they say – local is lekker!
2. When cooking, don't over-serve food
The idea of dishing out massive portions is partly driven by restaurant culture, and has slowly but surely started to trickle into our homes. Fight against that and don't dish up too much for your friends and family when you're cooking meals. Using small plates can really help with this!
3. Save (and actually eat) leftovers
Make sure you save uneaten food when you cook too much, or you get too much food at a restaurant. Label your leftovers so you can keep track of how long they have been in your fridge or freezer, and incorporate them into your daily or weekly routine.
4. Store food in the right places
Storing food in the right place is important. It is often surprising what kinds of fruits and vegetables want to be at room temperature versus in the refrigerator.
5. Avoid clutter in your fridge and freezer
Out of sight is out of mind when it comes to storing food. We forget something's there until it's no longer good to consume, so it makes sense to keep things easily visible and neatly stored.
Also, remember that things don't last forever in your freezer. Freezing can be a great asset in extending your food's lifespan, but it will eventually dry your food out.
6. Treat expiration and sell-by dates as guidelines
When it comes to expiration and sell-by dates, they identify food quality, not food safety. So remember to trust your sense of smell, sight and taste instead of always relying on the date on the package.
7. Keep track of what you throw away
Manage a waste log to keep an eye on what you are throwing out so you can prevent doing the same in the future. Also keep track of what's already in your fridge before you go shopping so that you don't double up on products and fail to use them before they go bad.
8. Donate to food banks and farms
Before you throw away excess food, look into food banks and charities where you can take items you are not going to consume before they go bad. Rather give them to people in need.
9. Try canning and pickling
Canning is a great way to preserve food (especially fruit) and increase its shelf life for months.
10. Use helpful apps and gadgets
There are various tools and apps like our Dinner on Demand recipe service that aim to help people avoid food waste, but don't assume these tools will do all the work– it's all still up to us.
11. Try composting.
Rather than discarding scraps, you can compost certain foods and turn them into nutrient-rich fertiliser for your garden.
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