Have you heard? This month, April 24th to be exact is Stop Food Waste Day, and that means it’s the perfect reminder to play your part in making the world a better place. Whether you want to make an effort to eat more sustainable foods or donate food to a local food bank, you could use this day as a chance to kickstart a new lifestyle with less food waste.
By purchasing seasonal food and paying attention to the way you store (and discard) what you buy, you can prevent food waste, save a pretty penny or two, and contribute to a much fairer world. On Stop Food Waste Day 2019, you can start to take action and begin building habits that last.
Food waste facts
Between ⅓ to ½ of all food produced around the world gets thrown out during harvest, processing and the selling. The American Journal of Agricultural Economics estimates that anywhere between 35 million tons and 103 million tons gets wasted every year in the United States alone. In the UK, that amount is around 6-7 million tons, and in Singapore, approximately 13 percent of the country's food gets thrown in the trash.
Considering we live in a world where roughly 734 million people live in extreme poverty (living on less than $1.90 a day), it’s disheartening to imagine that so much perfectly food goes to waste. But the impact isn’t only on humans –- this extreme amount of wasted food is also detrimental to the environment. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), food waste accounts for around 8 percent of all human-made greenhouse emissions. The excess methane from rotting food waste is just one problem, while another is the amount of land, water, and other resources that get allocated towards producing food that only ends up getting chucked.
How to make a difference
Don’t throw out any food on Stop Food Waste Day
Try to go the entire day without wasting even a small piece of (edible) food. Sounds easy, right? This exercise is a great way to show you just how much food you would usually throw away on any other day. Instead of just chucking your broccoli stalks in the trash, why not slice them thinly for your next stir fry? They’re edible and loaded with healthful nutrients, but many of us are guilty of throwing them away. Hopefully, this will encourage you to be more creative with the way you cook and shop.
Save scraps to make a broth
Making vegetable broth is easy, cost-effective and an excellent way to avoid wasting vegetables. All you have to do is collect leftover scraps of vegetables in a freezer-safe container, then whenever it comes time to make a broth, you can remove them and simmer them with water to create a tasty, nutritious stock for soups.
If you’re a meat eater, you could also save carcass bones to create a nutritious bone broth. Like vegetable broth, there are a host of recipes out there that you can use to make your own. During the process of boiling the bones for soup, healthy minerals, collagen and bone marrow fuse into the concoction, all of which contain many benefits.
Even if you live in an apartment, you can still make compost by putting food scraps in a sealable bin under your kitchen sink or counter. Many cities offer a service that picks up the scrap bins and takes the compost to a processing center. Usually, you’ll get deliveries of the finished compost in exchange for your contribution. If you have some space outdoors, you could also mix your scraps with leaves and soil to create your own compost pile and grow even more fruits and veggies!
Save your used coffee grounds
There seem to be a million ways you can use used coffee grounds. We like to sprinkle ours directly on plant soil as an all-natural fertilizer rich in nitrogen. Coffee grounds are also excellent for attracting worms that help water move through the soil and that break down organic matter into plant-friendly contents.
You can also use used coffee grounds in a luxurious exfoliating body scrub. Check out our very own coffee scrub recipe.
Stop food waste every day
We encourage you to pledge to stop food waste this April. Stop Food Waste Day is just the beginning –- let these new habits run in tandem with your personal health wellbeing ones. The more you save, the better you’ll feel inside and out. Create respect for your body and the environment it occupies. Happy composting!