Sustainability Strategies

Are you interested in getting organized, reducing food waste, and saving money? Food sustainability is a topic of growing interest and importance as environmental concerns are very much a hot topic these days. Below are some simple strategies for being more intentional about food buying, storage and ultimately reducing waste.

Storage and Organization

Organize your refrigerator/freezer for efficient use

  • Top shelves for all things that will spoil quickly – leftovers, fruit/veg, animal products, etc
  • Crisper drawers for items you won’t forget you had – beverages, condiments, etc
  • Use clear food storage containers – out of sight…out of mind!

Make the most of your freezer
  • Many grocery staples with short shelf lives can be frozen – especially bread products, cheese and produce
  • Try a 2- or 3- bin system in the freezer for leftover fruit, veggies, or compost

Store perishables properly to reduce spoilage

Kitchen Workflow

Get creative with leftovers
  • Most leftovers can be “upcycled” – baking stale bread into croutons, veggie scraps into homemade broth/stock, citrus or apple peels in stovetop potpourri recipes, re-growing green onions, etc

Schedule a kitchen inventory/clean out before grocery shopping if possible
  • This helps reduce double-buying foods you already had, forgetting to buy items you thought you already had, makes it easy to organize fresh groceries you just bought

When cleaning the kitchen of spoiled items, keep a notebook handy to reference items
  • This can help you identify which foods routinely get tossed out

Grocery Shopping

Use a shopping list
  • Have at least a loose idea of the week’s menu and shopping list before going

Shop seasonally

Keep the shelf life of items in mind
  • Planning a few meals for early in the week that incorporates faster-spoiling items, and some after that to include longer-lasting items
  • Shorter shelf life: peppers, avocado, berries, zucchini, greens
  • Longer shelf life: carrots, apples, sweet/potatoes, onions

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