As mentioned in my last post, food waste in Canada is a huge problem. There are organizations that are taking a stand and not waiting for the government to take steps in changing policies. You can do the same by shifting gears and making changes in your own habits that will help you get organized and reduce your food waste.
What you can do to Reduce Food Waste:
1. Buy in bulk:
Look for grocery stores and most likely small businesses that offer multiple types of bulk items that you won’t find in chain grocery stores. If you live in a small town see what’s available online and order with friends especially if there is a minimum order.
2. Waste Free Snacks:
For me the kitchen is the heart of a home. Whether living alone, with roommates or family, it’s a great place to connect, create and live a more healthy life. Gather your household (friends are great if you live alone!) and have fun making snacks for the week with the help of others. It’s great to make ones that you can freeze and save for the following weeks, and having others help also means you can make more than one recipe and have a variety to choose from. Here are a few of my regular go to’s:-
3. Plan your meals for the week:
This doesn’t mean you have to be a robot in the kitchen, it just means having a sense of what you would like to make that week, and creating a grocery list based on your general plan. Using a jar system for dried food, spices and teas also helps you see what is low and needs a filling. Sticking to your grocery list will help you buy only what you need and prevent you from throwing out rotting food later in the week. (And remember: avoid going to the grocery store hungry!)
4. Buy only what you need:
This is connected to planning your meals in that it helps to get to know how much food you eat in a week — how fruit do you eat in a week? How much produce do you actually use? (i.e. If you eat one apple a day and get groceries once a week, only buy seven apples.) We also encourage clients to stick to their grocery list and then buy one or two items that are not on it as a treat, or something on sale that that inspires them for the meals they have planned that week. This helps prevent overbuying.
5. Minimal Condiments:
Have a minimal amount of condiments and only buy ones that you know you’ll use. These tend to clutter fridge shelves and doors with many that end up expiring before you use them.
6. Organize your fridge into zones:
This helps you know what you have and what you need before you go grocery shopping. It minimizes waste — having a section for leftovers, or food that needs to be eaten soon is a great reminder.
Do you have any food waste challenges? Any strategies I didn’t cover here? Let me know in the comments or get in touch!