Food waste is generated by right the way along the supply chain: growing, transporting, manufacturing, selling, cooking, and serving of food. Decreasing food waste benefits us all: less pressure on global food prices, less destruction of wildlife habitats for food production, and a lower environmental impact!
Working to decrease your own food waste is one step you can make today that will begin to help make these improvements happen. Household food waste comes to about 8.3 million tons every year in the UK, most of which could have been eaten – given that 20% of the UK's greenhouse gas emissions are associated with food production, distribution and storage, if we stopped wasting food that could have been eaten we could prevent at least 20 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions each year.
Tips for decreasing your food waste:
Plan your meals and know what you need. Watch out for supermarket BOGOF deals so that you don’t overbuy.
Store your food properly, and keep leftovers to eat later.
Know yourfood labels. Food can be eaten past its ‘best before’ and ‘sell-by’ dates, and some foods are ok to eat a couple days past their use by date as well. These dates are conservative. Use your best judgment.
Compost your scraps. Oxford City Council is starting a composting initiative, which will be expanding. In the mean time, you can start composting at home.
Get recipes for any leftover ingredient at lovefoodhatewaste.org
There is more than enough food produced worldwide to feed everyone two times over, and yet food poverty continues to be a large issue—in the world, in UK, and in Oxford. Many people go hungry every day, while tons of good food is sent to landfills. Why not give the food to charities that feed people who are food insecure? Fareshare, (http://www.fareshare.org.uk/ ) operating in the UK, and the Oxford Food Bank (http://oxfordfoodbank.co.uk), operating in Oxford, are doing just that, and are increasing the nutritional value of those in poverty in the process. Help us by volunteering!