I have a confession to make. My food wastage habits have not been amazing of late. In fact when the hubby notices it, I think it’s time to make some serious changes! As you know Soulfull are all about supporting all things sustainable and eco, but to be honest food wastage had slipped off my radar. Quite simply because I didn’t fully understand the implications of food wastage. So I decided to do some digging, and it has just blown my mind and it might just blow yours too!
Globally, the impacts of food waste is astounding. According to Food Wise, Australians discard a whopping 20% of the food they purchase. This equates to one of every 5 bags of groceries you buy! For the average Australian household $3,800 of food is thrown away every year. Imagine what you could buy with that!
Some more mind boggling stats:
- The Government estimates food waste costs the Australian economy $20 billion each year.
- Over 5 million tonnes of food ends up as landfill, enough to fill 9,000 Olympic sized swimming pools.
- 35% of the average household bin is food waste.
- Nearly four million people experience food insecurity each year, one quarter are children.
- Over 710,000 people rely on food relief each month, one quarter are children.
What are the environmental effects of this you might wonder? When food rots with other organics in landfill, it gives off a greenhouse gas called methane, which is 25 times more potent than the carbon pollution that comes out of your car exhaust. What is even more alarming is an estimated 20-40% of fruit and vegetables are rejected even before they reach the shops mostly because they don’t match the consumers and supermarkets high cosmetic standards. If you add up all of the food Australia wastes each year, it’s enough to fill 450,000 garbage trucks.
These are staggering stats, but about one third of all food produced for human consumption around the world goes to waste. I hope this has inspired you to make some positive changes towards reducing your food wastage consumption like it has to our household!
Here are some super helpful tips we’ve compiled to reduce food waste in your home:
- Shop smart. Check the fridge before you shop and only buy what you need. Write a shopping list before you go to the shops.
- Plan your meals. This not only saves time but also saves you money and reduces food waste significantly!
- Store food correctly. We have some food storage hacks coming very soon! So many handy tips to prolong the life of your veges!
- Eat leftovers or use them to create another meal.
- Eat the Skin!
- Make homemade stock with all your excess veges.
- Compost if you can.
- Pack your lunch.
- If your meal comes with extra sides you know you won’t eat, simply let the restaurant know!
- Separate fruit that is very ripe from other fruits in your fruit bowl. Off fruit will accelerate the deterioration of the other fruit in the bowl.
- Before you go on holiday, don’t throw out your vegies and perishable foods. Turn them into pasta sauces, curries, bakes and other meals that you can freeze.
- Freeze your bread to stop it going stale.
There are so many ways you can reduce, reuse and recycle your food waste.
Even minimal changes to the way you shop, cook and consume food will help reduce our impact on the environment. We are all about that gentle change over time, making a more sustainable global impact.
With a small amount of effort, you can cut your food waste dramatically, save money and time, and help take some pressure off our Mama Earth.