- To help educate Brits on food waste, Wren Kitchens have shared clever tips to minimise how much food we throw away.
- From turning leftover fruits into smoothies to storing produce properly, these tips will help you get the most out of your weekly food shop.
UK households are responsible for 4.5 million tonnes of food waste a year, worth £14bn. To help Brits minimise how much produce they’re throwing away, Wren Kitchens have shared their top tips.
From making stocks from vegetable scraps to storing produce properly, these tips will ensure you get the most out of your food.
Double-check and plan around use-by dates:
Before buying food in grocery stores, be sure to double-check the expiry date on everything, making sure you have enough time to eat the produce. You can even look to plan your meals around the expiry dates, so everything gets used up.
Also, it’s worth ensuring that you understand the difference between use-by, sell-by and best before dates so you’re not throwing food away prematurely.
- Use-by: This indicates the date at which the food will no longer be good to consume, you should not consume, cook, or freeze the food after this date.
- Sell-by: This is the date at which the shop must sell the food by, it is still good to eat past this point.
- Best before: This is an indication of when the quality of the food might start to decline rather than the safety of eating it.
Use your freezer
Make sure that you’re using your freezer regularly, whether it be to freeze foods that you’re not going to get to eat before the use-by date, or to freeze meals where you have leftovers – perfect to save for a day when you can’t be bothered cooking!
Plan your shopping list
One big contributor to food waste is over-buying what you need. To make sure you’re not purchasing more than what you need, write a detailed shopping list and stick to this when you’re getting your shopping in.
Store foods properly
Not storing foods the correct way can affect their longevity of them, for instance, potatoes, tomatoes, garlic and onions should not be put in the fridge and instead should be kept at room temperature to get the most out of them.
Some ripening foods produce ethylene gas and can affect the longevity of other produce that is sensitive to the gas. Bananas, avocados, tomatoes, peaches and pears are some of the fruits and vegetables that produce this specific gas. These should be kept away from apples, peppers, salad leaves, berries and potatoes as the ethylene can make them go off prematurely.
Turn leftover food scraps into a smoothie…
Instead of throwing away the leftover parts of fruit and vegetables, such as peels and stalks, you can use these in your smoothies. Certain parts of these foods that we often throw away, such as kale stalks, still have a high nutritional value which can contribute to a great smoothie!
…or make stocks out of leftovers
If you don’t fancy using your leftovers in a smoothie, then you can save them to make vegetable or meat-based stocks, perfect for gravies for Sunday dinners! For a vegetable stock simply fry your vegetable leftovers with butter or oil and then add water to simmer it. For a meat-based stock, add your chicken carcass or meat bones in some water with vegetables and your desired herbs.
Shop your cupboards
Instead of going shopping, shop around your kitchen cupboards, fridge, or freezer regularly to see if there is anything you can whip up from foods that are about to expire that you already have in. There are tools to also help with this, simply input your ingredients and you’ll be shown a recipe for that: https://www.supercook.com/.