According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation 1.3 billion tonnes of food is wasted every year, this is equivalent to the amount of food produced in the whole of sub-Saharan Africa. To reflect the alarming amount of world wide food waste this year's theme for World Environment Day is Think.Eat.Save.
Despite all this food waste one in every seven people in the world go to bed hungry and more than 20,000 children under the age of five die from hunger each day. Given the devastating effects food waste has on the environment and the imbalance in lifestyles this is causing Think.Eat.Save encourages us to become more aware of the environmental impact of our food choices and empowers us all to make more informed decisions.
Simple Actions to Save Waste Today
While all these numbers might seem daunting there a number of small things you can put into practice to help be part of the solution:
- Meal Planner: plan your meals so you know exactly what your major meals will be for the week.
- Shopping Lists: with your meals planned you can make a detailed shopping list so you only buy what you need.
- Label your leftovers and open foods with an eat by date so your households knows what needs to be eaten first.
- Feed the Chooks: feed leftover food and kitchen scraps & peelings to your chickens, if you don't have chickens ask around the neighbourhood or visit your local city farm - they'd love the extra feed.
- Ask for a Doggie Bag: Take your leftovers home with you from the restaurant, no shame in eating.
- Rescue Food: Ask to take leftovers home from work functions, and encourage others to do similar.
- Ask what your local supermarket or favourite restaurant is doing to reduce foodwaste and encourage them to do more.
- Food for Worms: When you've reduced your food waste to as little as possible the compost bin and worm farms will happily eat up the rest.
Hopefully with these handy hints you can begin to reduce your food waste and become part of the solution. (Tips & hints adapted from www.oxfam.org.au/grow/method/save-food and www.lovefoodhatewaste.nsw.gov.au visit them for more handy ways of reducing food waste).
Support Food Waste Organisations
There are also a number of great Australian organisations that are doing their bit to help reduce food waste. Check out their websites to find out more and what they can do to help you reduce your food waste. http://www.ozharvest.org/index.asp and http://secondbite.org/
What are your tips on how to reduce food waste?