Food waste is a bigger problem than many people realize. In fact, nearly one-third of all food produced in the world is discarded or wasted for various reasons. That equates to nearly 1.3 billion tons every year.
While you might not think food waste affects you, think again. Tossing edible food doesn’t just waste money. Discarded food is sent to landfills, where it rots and produces methane gas, which is the second most common greenhouse gas. In other words, throwing out your food contributes to climate change. you can help reduce this harmful practice by following the easy tips in this video. Every little bit helps. 1.Learn to Preserve While you might think fermenting and pickling are new fads, food preservation techniques like these have been used for thousands of years. Pickling, a type of preservation method using brine or vinegar, may have been used as far back as 2400 BC. Pickling, drying, fermenting, freezing and curing are all methods you can use to make food last longer, thus reducing waste. Not only will these methods shrink your carbon footprint, they will save you money as well. What’s more, most preservation techniques are simple and can be fun. 2.Eat the Skin People often remove the skins of fruits, veggies and chicken when preparing meals. This is a shame, because so many nutrients are located in the outer layer of produce and in poultry skin. For example, apple skins contain a large amount of fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Chicken skin is packed with nutrients as well, including vitamin A, B vitamins, protein and healthy fats. 3.Blend It Up Blending up a nutrient-packed smoothie can be a delicious way to reduce food waste. While the stems, ends and peels of produce may not be appetizing in their whole form, adding them to a smoothie is a way to reap their many benefits. The stems of greens like kale and chard are packed with fiber and nutrients, making them a great addition to smoothies. The tops of beets, strawberries and carrots also make great add-ins. Other items that would otherwise be discarded can also be thrown into a nutritious blend, including fruit and vegetable peels, wilted herbs, overripe bananas and chopped broccoli stalks. 4.Make Homemade Stock Whipping up a homemade stock is an easy way to use excess food. Sauté vegetable scraps like the tops, stalks, peels and any other leftover bits with some olive oil or butter, then add water and let them simmer into an aromatic vegetable broth. Veggies aren’t the only scraps that can be transformed into a flavorsome stock. Rather than letting the chicken carcass or meat bones leftover from your dinner go to waste, simmer them with veggies, herbs and water to make a homemade stock that will put store-bought broth to shame. 5.Compost If You Can Composting leftover food is a beneficial way to reuse food scraps, turning food waste into energy for plants. While not everyone has room for an outdoor composting system, there’s a wide range of countertop composting systems that make this practice easy and accessible for everyone, even those with limited space. An outdoor composter may work well for someone with a large garden, while a countertop composter is best for city dwellers with houseplants or small herb garden.