You probably don’t realize how much food you waste every day, from spoiled produce to uneaten leftovers. Reducing food waste is a lifestyle. Plan your meals in advance, make a grocery list and stick to it, store food properly, try new recipes that use ingredients you already have and if you aren’t able to eat something before it spoils compost it.
How to Reduce Food Waste
- Meal Planning: Take an inventory of your pantry and plan to cook dishes using the ingredients you already have. Make a shopping list so that you only buy what you need.
- Mindful Shopping: Once you have created your shopping list based on your meal plan stick with it. As an added benefit you will save money instantly by reducing your impulse purchases.
- Storing Food Properly: Store food properly to prevent premature spoilage and maximize its shelf life.
- Cooking with Scraps and Leftovers: Have go-to recipes that use up cooking scraps and leftovers.
- Composting: Composting creates nutrient-rich organic matter, which can reduce our reliance on synthetic fertilizers while keeping methane-producing materials out of landfills. It also improves soil’s water retention so that you don’t have to water as often.
- Donating Unopened Food: If you have foods that you know you won’t be able to use before they spoil, ask if a neighbor could use them or donate them to a food pantry.
You make food-based decisions all day. Keep all of these tips in mind. You will notice that it becomes easier and easier to reduce your food waste as you form new habits. Don’t worry about getting everything perfect. These steps are cumulative so every little bit counts.