Aside from contributing to ever-growing landfills, food waste is also a waste of a lot of your money, as well as all your energy and effort in producing the food. If you want to help the environment in your own way, you can start by minimizing, or better yet, completely erasing food waste in your home. To give you an idea of where to start, here are some tips:
Don’t Buy Too Much Food
The first thing that you should do to minimize food waste is to stop buying too much whenever you go grocery shopping. Having a fully packed fridge may look nice. However, if your household cannot consume all the contents before they go bad, then it just adds to food waste. Taking several short grocery shopping trips every week instead of one long trip may help keep you from buying too much food, thereby cutting back on food waste.
Always Make a Shopping List
Having a grocery shopping list at hand can help keep your grocery trips short because you already know what things you need to throw into your cart. Moreover, a list will prevent you from buying food items that you already have at home, which can help minimize the amount of potential food waste.
Many restaurants and grocery stores use the FIFO method for organizing their stocks and keeping food waste to a bare minimum. FIFO stands for “First In, First Out”, and you can use the same method at home.
For instance, placing the newly purchased foods at the back of the fridge or cupboard will encourage people to use the ones that are in the front row, thereby ensuring that you will always have fresh food and reduce food waste.
The “out of sight, out of mind” saying can also apply to your food stores. If you cannot see what foods you have, there is a good chance that you will forget about them until they eventually go bad.
Store Your Food Properly
Your perishable food items, like meats, fruits and vegetables need proper storage to prevent them from spoiling too fast. For meats, you have to keep them in the freezer while fruits and vegetables should be stored in the crisper compartment, ideally in individual baggies. The United States Environmental Protection Agency states that certain fruits, like apples, bananas, and tomatoes emit natural gases that cause nearby fruits and vegetables to spoil faster, so you should store them separately.
Although these tips may seem overly simplistic, they can help drastically reduce the amount of food waste that your household produces.