5 Ways to Reduce Food Waste
Did you know our eating habits impact our environmental footprint more than any other consumption pattern? In Canada, the average household throws away one in four produce items. That’s like throwing away $600 of your hard earned money per year! On top of that, taxpayers in Toronto spend nearly $10 million a year getting rid of food waste that’s not composted. More scary stats: almost 75% of our food is processed in some way and all of the ingredients in a typical meal travel an average of 2,400km to get to your plate!
Think about the journey of a typical supermarket carrot. First it’s grown and harvested on a farm, then sent off to a food processor, then shipped on a (potentially refrigerated) truck/boat/plane to a supplier, and then shipped again to a retailer, where it will eventually be bought and driven home. That's a long food chain system with a lot of time, energy, and food wasted.
So how can we be more conscious consumers and do our part to keep the planet up, and food waste down? Here are 5 ways you can reduce food waste now!
5 Ways to Reduce Food Waste
1. Freeze before you throw away
That coconut curry recipe you found online was fantastic, but it only called for a few tablespoons of cilantro and you had to buy a whole bunch! Dice up the rest of those fresh herbs and freeze them in an ice cube tray. Next time you want to revisit that recipe, you’ll have ready-to-go herb cubes AND you'll skip a trip to the grocery store. Win win! Overripe fruit is another great one to freeze and use in smoothies or baked goods later on.
2. Get creative with soups and stews
Don’t throw away those wilted carrots and wrinkly peppers! Lots of veggies that are a little past their prime will go great in a soup. Bonus: you can freeze the extras for a make-ahead meal.
3. Join a CSA or local food delivery program
Minimizing the distance food travels helps cut down on food waste, including that which is lost during processing, transport and at the supermarket, and cuts down on energy used in an attempt to keep transported foods ‘fresh’.
4. Use the whole vegetable
Carrot greens? Broccoli stems? Think outside the box when it comes to those little extra bits and pieces! Parts of veggies that we typically throw away can be packed with valuable nutrients and are tasty to boot. For example, leave the skin on carrots and potatoes, sauté broccoli stems along with the florets, and save those beet and carrot greens for a salad or smoothie!
5. Get pre-portioned Recipe Kits from Fresh City
Let Fresh City do the meal planning for you. From farm to kitchen, Recipe Kits come with all the ingredients you need to make healthy, seasonal meals with no food waste! Choose from a rotating selection of delicious vegan, vegetarian, organic meat, fish and gluten-free meals. They’re delivered in reusable packaging to boot and will save you countless trips to the supermarket.
Click the button below to get started on your healthy-eating journey!
About Dee Buryk
Dee is Fresh City's Certified Nutritional Practioner, yoga instructor and founder of Growing Goddesses. She loves inspiring people to understand how simple changes in our lives can make major changes in how we feel about our bodies.