Supermarkets take a lot of flak for food waste in the UK, but the truth is a lot of food waste comes from individual households, too. A third of all food produced for human consumption is thrown away each year, so it’s important that we all do our bit to reduce the amount of food we get rid of. There are lots of ways to go about this, from growing your own fruit and veg to making jams and preserves to make your food go further. Find out how easy it can be to reduce your food waste using these 7 food waste solutions.
How To Reduce Food Waste At Home
If you make a meal plan and stick to it, your fridge should be more or less empty by the end of the week. It takes a little time to create a plan, but it makes shopping for food cheaper, easier – and you know you’re buying things that will definitely get eaten. Make sure to prepare for lunches too, and consider what you’ll feel like making depending on what’s happening during the day. (It’s definitely OK to include a chippy tea in your meal plan.)
When there’s food you need to use up in the fridge, it can be difficult to know what to do with it. A simple trick is to incorporate whatever’s left into your dinner plans, whether that’s making a salad to go with it, or adding extra veg to your spag bol. Instead of doubling up your portions, leave some leftovers for lunch the next day – it minimises waste, and saves you spending more on lunch.
We all know what to do when life gives you lemons, but the same principle applies to all kinds of fruit! Whether you have leftover strawberries from a summer birthday cake or rhubarb from an autumnal crumble, it’s easy to make jams and preserves to make your fruit go a little further. Find fantastic seasonal jam recipes here! If you already have a cracking jam recipe, you can find preserve jars for your homemade jams online here.
Juices & Smoothies
If you’re not much of a jam fan, you can also blend up your uneaten fruit & veg into homemade smoothies. Not only is this a great way to reduce your household food waste – it’s also sure to get the kids eating a healthy breakfast. Try blitzing nuts, honey, dried fruit and cereals into your smoothie for added texture and nutrition.
As well as your standard freezer fare, lots of fresh foods can be frozen to prolong their shelf-life. You can freeze milk, chopped herbs, berries, raw eggs, pasta sauces and more. Check out this guide to freezing foods for more food waste solutions.
Grow Your Own
Go from zero waste to self-sufficient by growing and eating your own food! You don’t need a huge garden or an allotment – potted fresh herbs are a great way to start, and all you need is a sunny windowsill. Try growing pepper and chilli plants with the seeds from bought peppers. It’s a great way to grow delicious organic fruit and veg, save money, and reduce your food waste.
Composting is another great food waste solution. If your food is way past it’s best, it can still be mulched into compost. Whether you have your own compost heap in the garden, or a special bin for food waste, it’s better to dispose of food in a composter than send it to landfill. Compost helps other plants grow, and mulched fruit and veg can add extra nutrients, so it’s a way of ensuring your uneaten food doesn’t go to waste.
What are the best food waste solutions you use in your household? Share in the comments!