Sunday, March 13, 2016

Food Waste IS money waste

Wasting food is not only harmful to the environment but it hurts your wallet as well! When food goes bad the money spent on it goes out with the trash just as the waste does. One website estimates Americans waste anywhere from 500 to 2000 dollars a year on food waste. That is an insane amount of money! I mean, I’ve purchased numerous cars for less than 2000 dollars. The key here is to be mindful of what you buy and when you buy it. The longer refrigerated items stay out of the nice cool refrigerator the faster they spoil. Here are a few tips to reduce the amount of food waste you produce:

Before you go shopping…
  • Take inventory of what you have in the fridge, freezer and pantry.
  • Make a meal plan for the week - think about how much time you have to cook or whether you have any lunch or dinner engagements. If planning meals for an entire week is too much, try shopping two or even three times a week and only plan for a few days.
  • Make a shopping list and stick to the list.

While Shopping

  • Shop at your local farmer’s market for fruits and vegetables. They are often picked a day or two before you buy them, unlike fruits and vegetables at grocery stores that often travel a week or two before they end up on the shelves.  Local fruits and vegetables are also not subjected to rough transportation, handling, or interrupted cooling, so less are wasted in transit. Also, farmers markets don’t hold fruits and vegetables to the same high aesthetic shape and size standards as supermarkets, so slightly crooked but delicious carrots are not rejected before they even leave the farmer's field.  This means less food is wasted before it reaches consumers.
  • If you must go to a grocery store, pick up fruits and vegetables last and carefully store them in your cart so they don’t get bruised or damaged.  Store them carefully in your shopping bag as well.

At home

  • Store fruits and vegetables properly to extend their shelf life.   
  • Visit the EatByDate website to find out how long your food will last. 
  • Use Fenugreen in your fruit and vegetable bin to extend the shelf life of fruits and vegetables. 
  • Get the most out of your vegetables. Store leftover carrot, onion, celery, herbs, etc., in a container in the freezer.  When the container is full, make a vegetable stock.  Freeze the stock for an easy soup whenever you want. 
  • Try to stick to your menu plan and use up your food.
These are just a few tips to get the full list click here

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