Food Waste Action Week: Top tips for cutting food waste
This week marks the third annual Food Waste Action Week organised by WRAP and Love Food Hate Waste. This year’s campaign focuses on ‘Win. Don’t Bin’, encouraging people to use up their leftovers to reduce the amount of food waste they’re producing and save money, time and the planet. Here’s Flame UK’s top five tips for reducing the amount of food waste you produce.
1. Check out the apps
If you’re looking to cut down on your food waste, there are lots of different apps you can use to do this. Using apps like TooGoodToGo and Olio are a great way to save leftover food from going to waste. Restaurants, supermarkets, and cafes can upload any food that they would usually throw away and people can buy it for a discounted price or even get it for free! If you’re running a restaurant or café, you could use these apps as a way of making sure that none of your food is going to waste. Or you could use these apps as a way of saving leftover food from local businesses and get your dinner for a lower price.
2. Utilise a food waste recycling scheme
If you’re struggling to cut down on the amount of food waste you’re producing, you could look to recycling and composting schemes to help you make sure none of your leftovers go to waste. All food waste can either be composted or recycled so there’s always a route for your leftovers to have a new life. Your leftovers could be recycled through In-vessel composting (IVC) or Anaerobic Digestion (AD) and used to create things like fertiliser and soil conditioner, preventing them from ending up in landfill.
3. Start meal planning
One of the best ways to cut food waste at home is to meal plan. If you can plan all the meals you’ll have in the week, you’ll be able to work out exactly what food you need to buy and how much you’re going to use. With this in mind, you’re less likely to end up with lots of leftovers or different food items you can’t use before it goes out of date.
4. Think before you throw
If you’re looking to cut down on the amount of food waste you’re creating, the best place to start is thinking before you throw food away. A study from Attest found that Brits throw away an average of 2.45 unconsumed groceries every week. With lots of supermarkets ditching the best before dates, it’s important to remember that most food can be eaten for a while after the set best before date. Once food has gone past this date, it’s still safe to eat, it just won’t be as great quality. So, it’s important that you’re not throwing food past its best before date away if you could still eat it.
5. Make the most of your freezer
Freezing any leftovers is a quick and easy method of cutting food waste. Instead of throwing away food you probably won’t use before its use by date, pop it in your freezer so you can use it later down the line. If you’ve accidentally cooked enough pasta for a village, portion it out and freeze it for another quick meal in the next week. The same goes for discounted food at the supermarket. Lots of shops will reduce food before closing so it doesn’t go to waste. Check if it can be frozen and pop it in the freezer when you get home.