Food waste is a large problem in the developed world. Depending on the country and source of the statistics, it is estimated that one quarter to one half of food produced ends up in the trash. There are huge concerns about the environmental and moral implications of these figures, not to mention the economic impact of this waste.
Much of this waste occurs pre-consumer, but we, as consumers, certainly contribute to this problem. Throwing away food is essentially throwing away money. Can we really afford to do that? If you regularly find yourself throwing away food, it is time to take a look and find ways to stop this siphon of your budget. Here are some ideas to get you started.
Buy less - Maybe this seems obvious, but if you buy less you will have to use what you have, and you will be able to use it in a more timely manner.
Get your produce ready - Fresh produce is so appealing in the store, and then it sits in your refrigerator drawer for a week, and it isn't so appealing any more. Another week, and it is in the trash. Prevent this waste by cutting up the vegetables all at the same time. That way they are ready when you want a quick snack.
Eat your leftovers! - Take them to work. Eat them for dinner. Use them to make something else. If there are a lot of leftovers freeze them for a quick and easy meal later. Don't throw them in the trash. Our favorite way to clean up the leftovers is to create a buffet from them. Everyone gets to pick what they want, and the leftovers disappear.
Get chickens - You'll never ever have to put food scraps in the trash again. They will eat every last shred of food, and give you fresh eggs in return. Maybe chickens aren't practical for everyone, but how about the next one?
Make compost - Meat or greasy foods aren't good for your compost, but just about all other food scraps are.
Wasting food is a problem. There are concerns about its effect on the environment, and about the people that food could be feeding. Wasting food is also a drain on your finances. Cut back and use up what you have to save money, and maybe help to keep the planet a little cleaner too!