According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the average family of four throws away approximately $1500 worth of uneaten food every year.1 With the rising costs of food and other daily essentials, that’s money you can use in your wallet! And, because we’re committed to our “All Taste, Less Waste” motto here at Lewis Bake Shop, we want to help you create a plan to decrease food waste in your home to celebrate Stop Food Waste Day!
Here are some tips we love to use in our homes to decrease the amount of food waste we create:
- Buy only what you need. Buying more than what you need could lead to food spoiling before you can use it. Our Lewis Bake Shop 1/2 Loaves are a spot-on example: the convenient 1/2 loaf size is perfect for smaller families, or for those families who want multiple varieties of bread, and it’s easy to use the entire loaf before it has the chance to expire.
- Make a weekly meal plan. Going to the grocery store with a plan means you’ll only buy what you need, eliminating any waste that may come from an unplanned or unneeded purchase.
- Understand expiration dates on food packaging. Different foods will include different styles of expiration dates on the packaging. Understanding these dates will help you determine if you will use them prior to spoiling! For more information, check out the USDA website here.
- Proper food storage. Not all food storage is created equal. Grain foods, like bread and cereal, should be stored in a cool, dry place, while most fruits and veggies belong in the fridge. If you need help with understanding how to properly store specific food items, refer to this U.S. Food and Drug Administration website.
- Repurpose food that is past its peak. Don’t throw away items that are slightly past expiration if they are still safe to eat. Stale bread can easily be turned into croutons or bread crumbs with a few easy steps, while older vegetables can be thrown in with eggs or soup to make a quick, hot meal.
- Learn to love your freezer. Excess fruits and vegetables can be easily stores in the freezer and consumed later. Just be sure to label your container with contents and a date. Do this same thing with leftover meals (like lasagna or chicken) to use for lunch the next day or dinner another week.
There are so many other ways to eliminate food waste, but these are just the Lewis Bake Shop favorites! Remember, even smalls steps add up, so start looking for ways to step up today and help reduce food waste!
Sources: 1. https://www.usda.gov/foodlossandwaste/consumers