We wouldn’t willing throw cash in the bin, right? But that’s exactly what’s happening every time we chuck out perfectly good food due to a best before date or because it’s looking a little limp.
Learn which foods are most often wasted and tackle the issue this Food Waste Action Week with delicious recipes and hacks for the busy kitchen. Save money, help the planet and enjoy some tasty recipes with these unmissable tips.
What a waste!
What weighs 1.3 billion tonnes and is valued at $1 trillion? No, not a whopping black diamond. These are the shocking numbers attributed to annual global food wastage and they’re difficult to get your head around.
Let’s make these figures more relatable: the average UK family throws away around £60 worth of food each month, adding up to over £700 a year. The worst part is this waste is absolutely preventable. Check out these 5 myths making you waste food.
Rotting waste releases greenhouse gases on top of the emissions from producing and transporting the food in the first place. Yet according to research conducted by WRAP, while 81% of us are worried about climate change, only 37% realise the link with wasting food.
The ray of hope here is that around 6% to 8% of all greenhouse gas emissions created by humans could be reduced if we stop wasting food, so cutting food waste is about saving more than your hard-earned cash.
Food waste comes in a few different forms including leftovers, expired products and waste from food preparation. There are a few regular offenders so it’s worth knowing who they are and how to take steps to avoid wasting them.
With a staggering 240 million slices thrown out each year, bread is top of the list and waste milk’s equally eye-watering with an estimated 5.9 million glasses going down the drain annually. That’s closely followed by 5.8m potatoes, 2.7m carrots and 1.3m apples.
A menu plan and shopping list will really help limit food waste, as well as the following handy hints.
Tips to tackle food waste
- Get savvy on storing
Know what goes where in the kitchen. Potatoes prefer the dark and apples last longer in a cool and well-ventilated spot. Here’s how to store other fruit and veg.
For maximum shelf life, milk and other dairy should be stored at the back of the fridge (not the door – oops!) where it’s coldest. And did you know milk and bread can be frozen? There’s a vast list of items that will happily keep in the freezer so gen up.
- App solutions
Help save food from going to waste by downloading a few brilliant apps. Too Good To Go will notify you of surplus food from cafes, restaurants and shops that’s up for grabs at great prices because it hasn’t sold in time.
OLIO does the same while also hooking you up with neighbours to share unwanted food such as fridge clear-outs before holidays or a glut of homegrown veg. And our ActiFry, Cook4Me and Cake Factory apps will help you discover recipes based on ingredients you need to use up.
- Lockdown learns
Food waste dropped during lockdowns as we all became a little more careful with our shopping and eating habits. Since restrictions lifted, waste is sadly on the up again but there are still lessons we can learn from lockdown.
Recipes to wipe out waste
With so many ways to turn stale bread into something delicious, there really is no excuse to bin it. The easiest thing to do is whizz it into breadcrumbs to coat and top a multitude of dishes, like these tasty arancini and Glamorgan sausages.
If you’re anything like us and occasionally cook too much pasta, these frittatas are a super yummy way of making sure it doesn’t go to waste. And if you want to take care of your gut and your wallet, try some easy fermenting to preserve ingredients that might otherwise be destined for the bin.
Want to get going right now? Rummage in the veg drawer and whip up this easy fridge-raid soup. Enjoy it while you think of all those pennies saved…