How To: Reduce Food Waste

Okay gals, raise your hand if you had a parent who liked to remind you, “there are starving children in (insert random country here)” if you didn’t clean your plate at meal time. As dramatic as it may have sounded at a time, they had a point. Food waste is a major problem around the globe. Studies show that globally, we waste about 1.3 billion tons of food a year. To put that into perspective, there are roughly 7.5 people on the planet right now. Of that, over 925 million are starving. What we waste in food each year, is enough to feed 3 billion people. Food waste is also a big source of greenhouse emissions, which is, yah know, bad for the planet. Just might make you think twice next time you go to throw out your leftovers. September 29th is actually the International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste. In the spirit of doing our part, here are some helpful ways and tips to avoid being part of the statistics.


Most of us have been in a situation where we make far too much food. We simply aren’t able to eat it all before it will go bad, or we can’t seem to force ourselves to eat the same thing another night in a row. If you find yourself in one of these situations, consider freezing what’s left. Tons of foods, everything from soups to baked goods, fruits and veggies, and entire meals can be stored in a freezer for up to months at a time and still be delicious and safe to eat down the road.

Rearrange Your Fridge

Sometimes your fridge can turn into this cavernous place where things get slowly pushed towards the back and forgotten. Before a shopping trip, take a moment to check out the fridge and your pantry. Take stock of what you already have so you don’t overbuy. Also, you can take the opportunity to see if there’s anything lurking you forgot about. Arrange the items in your fridge so the things that expire sooner are up front. That way, you will have a visual reminder to use them up first before they go to waste.

Don’t Be A Produce Snob

How many times have you looked over the fruits and veggies portions of your local grocery and purposely bypassed a misshapen apple, or a tomato that seemed to be a bit more bumpy than it should be? While you certainly don’t want to purchase rotten produce, “ugly” foods are only aesthetically lacking. They’re still fresh, they’re still delish. Plus, they work great in things like soups, stews, or smoothies where they’re just going to get cut up anyway. There are even some “ugly produce” subscription boxes popping up to try to get rid of the sigma surrounding them and cut back on food waste.

Write It Down

One of the biggest ways to reduce food waste is to help yourself identify just how often you’re guilty of it. Get a little notepad and start to monitor what you’re throwing out. Are you buying more fruit than you’re eating? Note it. Are you not managing to use all the milk before it turns? Write it down. Bread getting moldy before you can finish it? On the list it goes. From there, you can figure out what you need to buy in smaller portions, or what you might have to freeze some of ahead of time.

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