If you actually sat down and thought about how much food you actually waste per week, would you be willing to post that on Facebook? According to studies by the National Resources Defense Council, wasted food account for 25% of rotting waste in landfills across the United States.
One analogy the NRDC poses is that if every person were to go to the grocery store and buy three paper bags full of food, and every person drops one in the parking lot and leaves it there – that would equal the amount of wasted food in the United States per year.
In New Jersey alone, there are more than 1 million people who have no idea where their next meal will come from. One thing you can do in your own home to reduce the amount of food wasted, is to buy less and eat more of what you purchase. Here are a few tips from Table to Table in NJ on how to reduce food waste in your home:
- When you go grocery shopping, check the expiration dates. If you don’t feel like you will consume the product by that date, buy a smaller package.
- When food shopping, don’t buy things just because they are on sale. We know – it’s hard to resist a good deal, but wasting isn’t part of a good deal.
- Put smaller portions on your plate when serving a meal at home. If you want more, put another, even smaller portion on your plate. This will eliminate putting too much food on your plate that gets scraped into the trashcan after the meal.
- Take leftovers and pack them for lunch the next day. If you don’t think you will eat it the next day, put it in a container and freeze to enjoy again at a later date.
- Be sure your fresh food is stored properly. Make sure you put it in sealed containers and keep it in the appropriate temperature.
- Start a compost. Many people think composting at home is way too much work. There is even a way to compost inside an apartment! For details and instructions on how to do this at home, visit the EPA.org compost page. Composting turns your uneaten biodegradable foods into enriched soil perfect for gardening.
At Table to Table we are passionate about cutting down the amount of food waste here in New Jersey. Each and every member of this community has an important role to play ensuring that our environment remains safe and all of our neighbors are well-fed and healthy!