The amount of food wasted each year in the UK, covering households, manufacturing, hospitality and food service, retail and wholesale sectors, was found to be approximately 9.5 million tonnes in 2018, 70 per cent of which was supposed to be consumed by people (30 per cent being inedible parts).
Figures from WRAP show that the amount of food wasted over the course of those 12 months had a value of more than £19 billion, associated with over 25 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions - and over 85 per cent of the waste arose from households and food manufacture.
It can be difficult to know where to begin when it comes to reducing your individual impact on the planet, but the key is to start small and build up from there.
You can’t wake up and be zero waste overnight but lots of small steps will very quickly add up to big leaps and before you know it, you’ll have made serious inroads where your sustainability ambitions are concerned.
Starting with the kitchen could be a great jumping-off point and focusing on the amount of food you and your family waste will really make a big difference, not just to the planet but to your bank balance, as well.
A lot of it comes down to organisation. Meal planning can help prevent waste immediately, since you won’t be buying anything unnecessarily and it means you can work out what to do with any leftovers ahead of time. There are loads of really useful apps out there that can help you plan your weekly meals, but one of the best is Whisk.
This app allows you to save recipes from the web, devise daily plans, create shopping lists and join communities for all sorts of inspiration, based on dietary requirements, interests and so on.
Keeping track of what you buy and what you’ve used can help cut down wastage, so think about taking photos of the contents of your fridge and cupboard so you know what’s in there - a visual inventory, if you will. Also keep a close eye on your use-by dates when you buy food, so you know you’re only buying what you’ll have time to enjoy before it expires.
Also make good use of your freezer to help you preserve food. If you have leftover veggies, stick them in a freezer bag so you can throw them in soups or stir-fries later on. And put the bread in the freezer if you know it’s not going to be eaten straight away. You can easily defrost slices as and when you need them.
We’d love to hear what ideas you have for reducing food waste at home, so get in touch to let us know what you’ve all been up to.
Check out our range of eco friendly kitchen products to help become even greener at home.