Food Wasting Solutions to save $$$ and Earth
Annie and LJ are a fictional couple introduced to the readers of the Healthy Healing Eats blog in January 2020. Their storyline promotes healthy eating and earth-friendly practices.
“LJ, I just threw away a bunch of rotten tomatoes. We are wasting money on buying food that spoils before we eat it. The other day I read a statistic that says up to 40% of food is wasted in our country. We are contributing to that statistic.” “Yes, we could definitely pay attention to how much we’re buying, and how quickly we’re using it. But before we can come up with solutions, let’s look at the facts. According to the UN Environment report: https://www.unenvironment.org/regions/north-america/regional-initiatives/minimizing-food-waste. on average, the world’s farmers produce almost 20% more food than 30 years ago, yet there are nearly a billion people who continue to be food insecure and hungry. In the United States, an estimated 133 billion pounds of food goes to waste annually. That’s nearly 1/3 of the world’s food waste and is the single most significant component in landfills where it emits methane gas, making them the third-largest source of methane in the US, according to the EPA. Food production uses 50% of our land, 30% of all energy resources, and 80% of all freshwater (USDA, 2016).
A simple solution is a move to a more plant-based diet. Another is to stop bulk shopping; it’s been shown to be a significant producer of food waste. We can also eat the food we buy before purchasing more. For example, Annie, maybe you could eat the 3 types of cheese you have before buying more.” “I agree. From now on, let’s also use a shopping list and stick to it, and I promise not to buy multiple types of cheese anymore.” “Ok, we also need to practice proper food storage, because that is another source of wastage. I just read that potatoes, tomatoes, garlic, cucumbers, and onions should not be refrigerated but kept at room temperature to avoid premature ripening. Separating foods that produce ethylene gas (promotes ripening) such as bananas, avocados, cantaloupe, green onions, peaches, and pears from those that don’t is another way to eliminate early spoilage.”
“Babes if we’re going to be serious about saving $$$ and stopping food waste we should check out Grove Collaborative: https://www.grove.co/settings/account,
- BioBag Resealable Food Storage Bag Set. 20-quart size, 25-sandwich, 30-snack. $12.99. The quart and sandwich bags have resealable zippers. Made from plant and vegetable-based materials, making them 100% compostable and biodegradable.
- Reusable Bag Essentials set — $10.95. Made from food-safe BPA, keep food fresh. Easy to clean, leak-proof.
“These will make leftover days easier. Also, here’s another nifty idea for saving the expensive herbs we buy; freeze them in olive oil in ice cube trays.” LJ thoughtfully paused and…
Andrea Breaux is the Founder of Healthy Healing Eats — a resource about nutrition, food-as-medicine, and earth-friendly lifestyle practices. Find her weekly blog, recipes, and products at healthyhealingeats.com