Quick question: how much food did you throw out last week? Just a few scraps from Saturday night’s Uber Eats order? A handful of limp veggies laying to rest in the bottom of your crisper? Or the whole contents of your fridge (expiry dates get away from us sometimes)?
If you’re anything like the average Aussie, you probably started last Monday with the best intentions to cook with wholesome products, meal prep like a boss, and avoid eating out unless it’s an absolutely-can’t-be-missed special occasion.
But by Tuesday, you were feeling low, so you made some last-minute dinner plans with your bestie. On Wednesday, you left that tasty looking salad you whipped up on your kitchen bench. Friday always seems to end in drinks and dancing with your work wife, so you didn’t eat at home then, either… Suddenly, it’s Sunday and you’re starting at a fridge full of slimy produce.
Time to toss the lot and make another dash to Woolies, right? Wait, not so fast!
Did you know that a third of all food products in this country go to waste? It’s a massive contributor to the climate crisis and is responsible for a whopping 8–10% of global greenhouse gases. We wish it wasn’t true, but it definitely is.
So, here are a few simple ways to avoid it in the future!
This is something efficiency experts will say is a total no-no, but if you only buy what you need each time you hit the shops, your food is far less likely to end up in landfill.
Do you regularly wander your local supermarket aisles aimlessly, hoping culinary inspiration will strike? Don’t just buy food on impulse. Take some time to figure out what you actually need (and want!) to eat and only purchase those items.
To master your grocery trips, we recommend you try the AnyList app.
This app definitely lives up to its name, with a near-perfect 4.9 rating on the App Store. As you type, the app's autocomplete feature suggests common items, and then organises them intuitively into categories as you type. Easily share lists via email with as many people as you want – any changes will sync immediately.
Download it for free on iOS or Android.
Freezing meals sounds a bit daggy, but it’s one of the best ways to ensure your food stays fresh and edible. Cook a few of your favourite dishes in bulk and store them away for those nights where the thought of takeaway could get the better of you. Need some inspiration? Dial up the desirability of a freezer meal with these stainless steel containers from Hello! Green. They’re plastic-free and will look great on your freezer shelves!
Try these super cool Reusable Silicone Food Pouches by Ever Eco, which will help you ditch single-use plastic by storing fresh and frozen veggies, meat, sandwiches, or snacks.
Composting is all the rage these days, and for good reason! It’s great for the environment, reduces landfill waste, and gives you an excuse to get outdoors (among many, many other benefits). It’s not just for folks with leafy gardens, either. There are heaps of compost starter kits around now, like this one from Urban Composter, which can fit neatly on your kitchen bench.
We also love the Joseph & Joseph slimline food waste caddy, which is designed to make collecting food scraps easier with its convenient flip-up lid and extra wide opening.
A soggy zucchini gives most of us the heebie-jeebies, but limp veggies are a great way to pad out soups and curries (which will store perfectly in your freezer, too!). Need some direction? Try this herby zucchini, leek, and potato soup recipe.
Keen to learn more about composting? Check out this article on the community ‘Cool Seats’, which turn café food waste into beautiful gardens!
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