This year we’re excited to be attending the Johannesburg Good Food & Wine Show, in partnership with Khula, an agricultural start-up that uses mobile to create a marketplace for sustainable, small-scale farmers. The theme of this year’s good food and wine show is food waste, and the organisers hope to raise awareness of this global issue. And to drive this inititaive, all leftover food from the show is being donated to FoodForward SA, an organisation that redistributes surplus food from retailers, manufacturers and other organisations, to NPOs that feed thousands of people every day. So we thought we’d share some of our best starter tips for tackling food waste in the home.
The first thing to do, is to start becoming aware of the problem and the food waste your household generates. Most people don’t realise how much food they’re actually throwing away, from tomato tops and celery leaves to tea bags and that 3-week old pizza from the back of your fridge. Food waste is a big problem, and in South Africa alone, 9 million tonnes of food are wasted every year. It’s bad for the environment, bad for our wallets, and bad for all the hungry people out there.
But don’t panic! Reducing the food waste your home generates is easier than you think, and it all starts with a commitment to be a little more conscious of what we’re consuming and throwing away. Here are 7 easy and practical steps to start reducing the food wasted in your home:
- Having a weekend fry-up? Rinse your egg shells and crush them into your garden – they help keep pests away from your plants!
- If tea is your thing, then invest in good quality tea, and make two cups of tea with one tea bag. We promise it’ll be twice as nice!
- Look for ways to use the whole veg. Did you know beetroot leaves are completely edible? You can cook them like swiss chard and kale. Or celery – give this post a read on how to use the whole thing, and grow a new one!
- Start a herb garden. Whether it’s in your garden or in some pots on your windowsill, fresh herbs will help you waste less, and save some cash. Those little herb punnets at the shops aren’t helping anyone – they cost you money and let’s be honest, most of the punnet goes to waste, because who needs that much coriander?!
- Here’s a crazy one, why not leave the skin on for some of your veg? Making chips or wedges, leave the skin on, they’ll be super crispy and yum! Even potato mash, it won’t be as creamy, but you might find that’s not so bad. And butternut – if you slow roast it with the skin on, it gets soft and completely edible. Just make sure to give the skins a good rinse!
- Plan your meals and only buy what you need. Meal planning is not always an easy task, but give this post a read for some simple tips on adding a little more structure to your meals, and saving yourself unnecessary purchases in the process
- Make your freezer your friend. You can freeze a lot more than just meat – think leftovers, par-boiled veg, herbs, nuts, egg yolks and so much more! We take you through the basics of freezer love in this blog post
Easy, right? Give it a go, and unleash your inner eco warrior! Share any of your food saving tips with us via social media or in the comments below, we’d love to see how you’re changing the world, one crushed egg shell at a time!
And join us the Good Food & Wine Show this weekend, for more inspiration on the topic, and some deliciously good food, of course!