When we talk about food waste, many people think that the phenomenon concerns restaurants, school canteens, barracks or even large retailers. In reality most of the wastes derive from a not very careful and a responsible consumption made in the family.
It is necessary to learn or maybe it would be better to say learn how to do the shopping, to choose types and quantities of food, to preserve them properly and maybe even to create menus by using leftovers. All these seem small things, but if you multiply more ethical, informed and responsible behavior of individuals, for the number of families, the impact can be enormous.
Food waste is worth almost 16 billion, and almost 12 of these derive precisely from waste consumed at home by families. In other words, food waste is worth almost one point of our GDP. These are some embarrassing figures, but of course the problem is not only economic, it is environmental and ethical, since if on one side of the world we continue to waste the food, on the other it is good not to forget, there are still many people who die of hunger.
In reality, one does not necessarily have to look to the so-called third world to find undernourished people who risk their lives or struggle with serious diseases. Even in our cities there are strong contradictions, there are those who waste large quantities of food and those who struggle to put a plate of pasta on the table.
Often the poor who live next door to us are almost invisible to our eyes, but should not be forgotten and should serve more than many data, a studies and considerations, perhaps from research institutes or renowned experts, to make us change our habits. There are also many apps that help us to fight the phenomenon of food waste in a conscious way and there is really a lot that each of us, in his own small way, can start to do, right now.
How to reduce food waste at home
There are some simple tricks that, if known and followed, can help us immediately to reduce food waste. Planning or living with more awareness the moment of shopping is a great way to reduce food waste. It would be a good to go shopping having in mind the menu that will be prepared in the following days, in order to avoid impulse purchases.
It will be good then to associate food waste to the waste of money. If we can understand the economic impact on our family finances of throwing away food, we will undoubtedly be more careful so that this happens as little as possible.
Checking carefully the expiry dates of what we put in the shopping cart is another small, but fundamental trick, to avoid bad surprises and finding ourselves throwing food in the garbage can. Another very simple thing, but absolutely a fundamental, that should always be done is to verify that our refrigerator is working properly.
Food should generally be stored at a temperature between 1 and 5 degrees, to stay fresh for as long as possible. Monitoring the temperature of the refrigerator and more generally its proper functioning is important to avoid waste food.
Serving small portions can not only help to maintain the line, but to avoid waste, which in this case are the leftovers left in the plate and that inevitably end up in the trash. If you are still hungry you can always do an encore, with another small portion, so that nothing is wasted.
Finally, in order to avoid wasting food a little creativity is needed. If there are leftovers, perhaps after a lunch or dinner with guests or at some party, these can become ingredients for preparations to be proposed in the following days, you will avoid waste and you will also be able to save a lot of money.
It is not difficult, with the leftover meat you can create a meatballs or other preparations, with the fruit no longer beautiful to be presented on the table, you can make a smoothies or fruit salads. In the kitchen you should always throw away as little as possible.