Tips from the U.S. EPA to Cut Holiday Food Waste
See how much food (and money) you are really throwing away every week by measuring (by volume or weight) your edible and preventable food waste for six weeks. That may seem like a pain, but the U.S. EPA found that it’s hard to achieve food waste reduction if you don’t actually measure how much you are throwing away and identify why you couldn’t eat what you bought. Those who participated in this challenge noted it had a big impact on their shopping and cooking plans and helped them reduce wasted food.
We all do it—shop for home-cooked meals and then opt to dine out or do take-out instead. To reduce food waste, be realistic about how many meals you will actually cook at home.
Food waste often occurs because we are improperly storing our fruits and vegetables. Many fruits give off natural gases that hasten the spoilage of other nearby produce, and it’s helpful to know which items should be stored inside and outside the fridge to maximize shelf life.
One of the biggest reasons people don’t eat what they buy is that their cooking time is limited on weeknights. Taking a few moments to prepare your food after purchasing it will make it easier to whip up meals later.
Sometimes our own refrigerators are so full that it’s difficult to clearly identify foods that should be eaten first. Counteract this by managing your fridge more efficiently and designating a space for foods that should be eaten relatively soon.