Tag Archive for 'Food Waste'

Some More Ideas on Not Wasting Food!

Greetings from the sunny UAE, SuperForest!

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Following SuperForester April’s fabulous post on avoiding neglecting your fresh produce by keeping a tally of what you’ve got on the front of your fridge (such a beautifully simple idea Miss A!) I was doing a little online digging for some more bright ideas, and came across this tasty article by Lisa Schmeiser from sfgate.com which collates some simple and handy tips for getting the most from your fridge. A couple of my favourites:

TIP #1: Play Tetris with your freezer. This is where years of video gaming pay off, because you can use every inch of your freezer to store leftovers you’re sick of. Keep around some freezer-safe bags in different sizes (the quart and gallon ones are MVPs), some freezer paper and a Sharpie so you can properly store and label your foods.

Mark Bittman recommends the following guidelines for what can be frozen without coming out the worse for wear: fresh noodles; flour; grains and nuts; whole coffee beans; soup stock; stock-making material (chicken parts, vegetable peels); bread dough and bread crumbs; biscuit and cookie dough; tomatoes and tomato sauce; fruits; vegetables; egg whites; wine; citrus juice.

And label, label, label. There’s no point in saving anything if you don’t know what it is. For you crafty types, check out these downloadable freezer labels that let you circle the date the food went into the clink.

TIP #4: Emulate the grocery store: Oldest items in the front, newest in the back. This is simple rearranging — but it keeps you from having three half-finished boxes of water crackers going at a time, or using up one jar of marinara right as the other one expires.

TIP #9: Shop like you live, not like you think you should live. Yes, we should all buy in bulk because it’s cheaper on a per-ounce basis … but what’s the point if you can’t eat your way through 32 ounces of yogurt and it goes funky? Yes, we should eat the high-fiber, low-sugar cereal, but if that’s what’s going stale while the instant oatmeal gets hoovered up … just admit you’re not going to be eating Morning Twig Mix for a while.

Ms Schmeiser also mentions something I’ve not even considered before: how our ubiquitous iphone apps (well, not for me, since I’m still essentially analogue;) can assist in making our choices greener!  Whilst you want to use food that’s still good, even if it’s lost the first blush of youth, we have to be safe. And I don’t know about you, but I’m just not so brave as my Dad with the old “have a sniff, have a taste” strategy when it comes to dairy or protein.  So you could tape a food shelf life chart to your fridge (What’s Cooking America has a user friendly one here) or download one of the new iphone apps (like this one from Still Tasty) so you’ve got the info at your fingertips!


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Have you ever used apps like this? Do they help? Any other tips you’d share?

Love

P

How Not To Waste Perfectly Good Food

Yo, SuperForest!

Sometimes, I buy fresh produce and it sits in the bottom of my fridge and remains there for weeks, until it turns awful colours and its smell finally signals to me that it needs to go in the bin. Not anymore. You don’t have to either.

I explain in the vid.

April

Mayor Boris and EFRA Strategise to Reduce Waste

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Good Evening SuperForesters

Following the UK news this week, I was excited to see that with the new year comes politicians setting out new strategies to reduce waste:  EFRA (the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee made up of Members of Parliament) published their Report into UK waste and London Mayor Boris Johnson announced “London’s Wasted Resource”, his draft municipal waste strategy for London. And to those unfamiliar with him: yes, that really is his hair.

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The EFRA report recommended that the government introduce “mandatory collection” of food waste from our houses (or flats) and ban leftovers going to landfill.  They also encouraged the government to set targets for separate collection of food waste for composting or producing energy, and said that councils should provide support for us to compost at home  (incidentally, it’s definitely worth checking out whether your local council does provide composting support – Camden, although being significantly more expensive than I’d like, did offer me a heavily subsidised wormery delivered to my door – not the worms, they were sent to my office by special delivery – when I delved into the website. Yay!)

The report also called for action to reduce the amount of retail and industrial waste, including suggesting that retailers above a certain size to be required to publish their recycling statistics – which, given that less than 10% of England’s total waste (of a shocking c.330m tonnes a year) is domestic, seems a hugely important area to focus on.  You can read more at the Guardian.

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Then came Boris! London’s Wasted Resource outlined plans to cut the amount of rubbish going to landfill sites to zero within 15 years and included his support of a 2010 London-based trial of an American scheme called Recycle Bank, which gives householders shopping vouchers or donations to charity to the value of how much they recycle.  The Strategy is now being consulted on by London Assembly and Greater London Authority until March 15 2010 with a full public consultation due for this summer. You can read more about it here (or if you’re really keen you can scope the whole 174 page document here!)

If you’re at all interested in waste (hey, you’re SuperForesters!) then do please read a truly eye opening article on food waste here (45% of bagged salads?!) and if you’d like to do something about your own, check out Love Food Hate Waste -  a super resource of info and doable tips for how to plan your shop, recipes and clever storage ideas.

It struck me that what both reports have in common is their conception of waste as a resource – both directly (via energy-from-waste technology) or negatively (by reducing waste you open up previously lost revenue).  It seems a little odd, but perhaps that’s the way to get things done on a city-wide/national scale?

Sure, it’s just announcing of broad strategy – and politics (especially in an election year) is full of policies that end up unfulfilled – but it’s great to see it on the agenda, and remember we can vote (literally) with our feet (not literally. Unless you’re really flexible)

Love

P

(and thank you, as ever, to The Grauniad for bringing me the news)

Pre-Thanksgiving Reminder- “Food: Waste Not, Want Not”

Howdy, SuperForest!

Thanksgiving is only a day away (!!!), and being that the focus of this holiday is as much on food as it is gratitude, we felt it was only fitting to share this great video from our friends at GOOD. The subject is on the food we waste and the facts are staggering. Lucky for us, there is a lot we can do to help.

Love to you all as we kick off this holiday season! Yay!!! <3