It scares me a bit when I realise how much food we waste. Whether it’s stuff that my three-year-old rejects (“I don’t like broccoli… or pasta… or cheese…”) or veg that we haven’t quite used up yet and has gone off in the fridge, our food waste recycling bin is probably fuller than it should be each fortnight.
I could save my family up to £700 a year by reducing our food waste through four easy steps. WasteAware are encouraging Hertfordshire residents to make the most of their food and save up to £60 a month with the launch of their new video, “Making food waste history”. But it’s not just Hertfordshire residents wh can benefit from the tips – we all can…
In the UK we throw away more than 7 million tonnes of food and drink every year and the average family throws away the equivalent of 6 meals a week. These facts are pretty staggering especially when you consider that some of this food was actually still fit to be eaten.
Research into food waste by WRAP has shown that food is mainly wasted due to incorrect portioning, storage or planning. By taking four simple steps to reduce food waste, the average family can save up to £700 a year on their food bill:
1. Plan ahead
Shopping lists can save time and money. Check your store cupboards and freezer before shopping. Organise your fridge and cupboards so the shortest date items are at the front.
2. Store correctly
Fruit can last much longer if kept in the fridge (except bananas). Potatoes last longer if stored in a cool dark place. Most meals can be frozen and kept for a later date.
3. Cook what you need
Correct portioning can save money… as well as the waistline! Did you know that one cup of uncooked rice is enough for four people? 100g of uncooked pasta is enough for 1 adult.
4. Recycle what you can’t eat
Uncooked fruit and vegetables can be home composted. Cooked food can be recycled at the kerbside through your organic waste collection.
Food waste reduction tips:
At their recent food waste roadshow, Waste Aware has received some great food waste reduction tips from Hertfordshire residents. Here are some of my favourites:
• Make vegetable crisps from vegetable peelings by baking them in the oven with some oil and salt.
• Use up all your leftover vegetables by blending them to create a unique soup. (PS This is great at Christmas as you can add all your leftovers to make a Christmas flavoured soup.)
• Leftover chicken from a roast makes a nice curry later in the week.
• Leftover plain pasta can be fried in a pan with garlic and bread crumbs for a tasty, quick meal.
• Create your own banana puree mash over-ripe bananas with lemon juice and sugar. This can be frozen for later too.
• Chicken bones can be boiled to create stock for soups.
Do you have any more tips on reducing food waste?
• Thank you to Hertfordshire County Council for sponsoring this post. For details on how I work with brands and organisations, see my Work With Me page