Wasting food feeds climate change. Don’t believe us? Well, if we stopped throwing away the 710,000 tonnes of potatoes we waste every year in our homes, it could stop 330,000 tonnes of CO2e from going into the atmosphere! In East Sussex, food makes up more than a third of the waste in our bins and there are some easy things we can all do to reduce that.
When we throw away food that could have been eaten we are not just wasting food but the valuable resources that went into making it including water, land and greenhouse gases. That’s why during Food Waste Action Week (1 to 7 March 2021), Love Food Hate Waste is calling on everyone to understand the true value of food and to consider the impact of their behaviours.
You can start by whipping up tasty leftover recipes, using up edible broccoli stalks and potato peelings, storing food the correct way, and spreading the word to ensure that no food that could have been eaten goes to waste.
70% of all wasted food in the UK comes from our homes. That’s 4.5 million tonnes of tasty food wasted, and we can save every last crumb!
Everyone can make a difference, and something as small as saving your leftovers and encouraging friends and family to do the same means you’re doing your part.
Buy what you need
Did you know that the average family household wastes around £70 of food per month?
- Plan ahead to reduce food waste. Don’t buy food for seven days when you know you’re likely to order a takeaway on Saturday.
- Take a picture of your fridge before you go shopping so you don’t accidentally double up on what you already have.
- Make a meal plan for the week. Check what you already have in the cupboards and fridge so you’re using up what you already have to make meals.
- Take a list of what you need to buy to the supermarket. If it’s not on the list don’t put it in the trolley!
- Avoid deals. Remember, if you won’t eat it all in time, it’s not a deal – only waste.
- Buy loose fruit and veg where you can.
Store food properly
You can make your food last weeks or even months longer by storing it correctly.
- Store food in air tight containers. Using bag ties, clips, Tupperware or even elastics bands and pegs to ensure items are airtight can go a long way!
- Chill the fridge out. Make sure your fridge is set to the right temperature. It should be between 0- 5 c. Use Love Food Hate Waste’s useful tool for checking your fridge temperature.
- Find out how to store food correctly and what you can freeze using Love Food Hate Waste’s A-Z of food storage. Not going to get through that bag of carrots by the use by date? Freeze them for another time.
Eat it all
In East Sussex, food makes up more than a third of the waste in our bins. Eating everything we buy, including the bits we’d usually throw away, can help reduce food waste.
- What do our food date labels really mean? Can we still eat food that is past its best by date? Yes you can! Although never eat something that has passed its use by date. A top tip is to freeze the item if you aren’t sure you’ll eat it by then. Food date labels are explained.
- Eat it all. Learn how you can avoid chucking the end of a loaf, wilted veg and cauliflower leaves with Love Food Hate Waste’s compleat food guide.
- Only got the odd sad-looking carrot left in your fridge? Check out these ideas for using odd bits of old fruit and veg up.
- Finally know how much pasta you need per person with this handy portion planner.
Adding vegetable peelings to your compost heap is a great way to put waste to good use (and keep it out of your kitchen bin). Some torn up cardboard packaging is great for your composting ‘mix’ too!
We also provide great value garden compost bins.
Live in a flat or don’t have time to garden? Learn how to compost without a garden.
Food waste collections
If you live in an area covered by Lewes District Council there is currently a kerbside scheme that collects food waste.
Separate weekly kerbside food waste collections might be on the horizon in 2023 for all parts of East Sussex – not just the Lewes area. However, there’s lots we can do in the meantime and remember – prevention and minimisation of food waste in the first place delivers the biggest environmental benefits before any recycling is required.
If you’re hungry for change, visit Love Food Hate Waste to find out how you can get involved and help our planet.