Practical ideas on reducing food waste

I always thought that I am pretty good at reducing waste but still watching this made me reflect. It is most shocking to hear produce sellers explain how the less-perfect looking ones and the last perfect looking one on the shelf usually just get wasted because no one wants them….it’s really not much of an issue back home, especially at the farmers’ markets, the leftovers still got sold, at slightly lower price, then everyone is happy. But I guess that can’t happen in supermarkets? That’s quite wrong.

Before rules can be made to reduce food waste from the supermarkets (like in France), the least we can do is maybe to act against our spoiled consumer psych, and take the unwanted less perfect looking fruits and veggies…

Much of the food waste is generated from the production and logistics side, however there is so much we can do as consumers.

Rule of thumb: get better at cooking!

I heard this suggestion at the ISWA conference in Antwerp last year from an British NGO working on such issues. How unexpected and true!

Even if we are good cooks, the secretively increasing size of the modern meal portion present many other complications from obesity to again, food waste, because sometimes too much is just too much! Event catering services should really take note of their serving size and find ways to reduce it to save cost and waste. I recently attended the Basque EU sustainable cities and towns conference where pinxtos (Basque version of tapas) were served. What a great idea for event catering. They comes in small bite sizes so plates and silverware are’t really necessary; they offers great variety to satisfy our need for local cuisine; I imagine they are easy to prepare which comes handy when around 1000 people in suites need to be feed. I wrote another blog on what I learned about sustainable conference hosting from this wonderful event.

And here I found a practical blog written by a chef, Tom Colicchio about reducing food waste at home. The suggestions in a nut shell are:

  • meal planning
  • use your freezer
  • Friday the soup day
  • be creative with leftovers and “weird” parts of the vegetables

Doesn’t sound too hard 🙂