In order to generate global awareness for those who suffer from hunger and to ensure the need for food security and nutritious diets for all, 16th October is observed as World Food Day. In fact, according to a study, about one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption (approximately 1.3 billion tonnes) gets lost or wasted. Food is fundamental right that should be available for all but it still isn't. So, since global poverty is still being tackled, we should consciously make an effort to save food from being wasted. Here are some simple but, effective tips that you can follow to avoid food wastage.
1. Be a smart shopper.
Be practical and realistic while shopping for groceries. Also, make a list of food items that you actually need to buy before going to shop. Avoid reckless shopping. Savings bhi ho jaegi.
2. Don't over serve food.
If you have guests coming over, give them small servings of food. And, using small plates can help with that. Okay?
3. When you cook too much try to eat the leftovers.
There's nothing wrong with eating leftover food, as long as it has not gone bad. You can also call friends over to your house to finish leftover food. Why waste food when you can share it?
4. Store food in the right places.
Now, you can't keep a vegetable outside for more than a week and still expect it to be in good condition. All food items need to stored in the right temperature so that they last longer. To understand where certain fruits and vegetables should be kept, click here.
5. Try food apps to avoid food wastage.
There are various tools and apps available that you can use to track food wastage. Handpick is an app that helps you plan meals around the ingredients you already have in the kitchen. But don't assume these tools will do all the work for you. Ultimately, it's still up to us.
6. Learn the art of preserving food to extend their shelf life.
Canning is a great way to preserve food and fruits and to increase their shelf life for months. Click here to see a tutorial.
7. Keep the fridge clutter free.
Organize all the food items in your fridge neatly. This way, you'll know just how much food is stored and how much is on the verge of expiring. By doing so, you'll be aware of which food item you must consume first before it rots. Smart, right?
8. Always check the expiry date before making a purchase.
Do you really want to have stale food? No, right? So check the expiry date of every item you purchase in order to avoid wastage. Make sure the products you buy have at least 3-6 months of shelf life.
9. Use powdered dairy products for a longer shelf life.
There's no harm in trying powdered dairy products. They taste just as good and they cost a lot cheaper.
10. Share the same dish if you are going out with friends.
Instead of ordering two separate dishes, order a meal that you guys can share. You can always order more later, if you want.
11. Deep freeze food items that are on the verge of expiring.
If the food item is going to expire, make sure you deep-freeze it. This way, it will last another 30 days. But, don't just leave it in the freezer for too many days and forget about it.
12. Avoid over cooking meals.
Try to understand how much quantity of food will be sufficient for the given number of people and just try to cook the right amount. By doing so, you'll have a rough idea of how much food needs to be cooked.
13. Get creative. Mix it up and don't shy away from experimenting.
If some vegetables or fruits are on the verge of getting spoilt, you can always make a salad out of it. You can also make healthy smoothies and juices.
14. Don't go for shopping on an empty stomach.
This might sound bizarre but if you go shopping on an empty stomach you are likely to purchase more food items than you actually need. Don't let your mind trick you into buying things that you don't need.
15. Stop snacking in between meals.
How will you finish all your food if you keep snacking on something after every hour? Try to avoid snacking in between meals as much as you can so that you eat your meals properly without wasting it.
16. Practice FIFO.
FIFO stands for 'First In, First Out'. This essentially means that you should move older products to the front of the fridge so that you know which food item needs to be consumed first.
17. Make a meal out of leftover food at least once a week.
Use leftover vegetables in your fridge to make a meal out of it. Try to be as creative as you can, combine different combinations to make something unique. You might just want to take up cooking as a hobby.
18. Store food in proper containers to increase their shelf life.
Food items tend to get spoilt way too early when they are stored in unfavourable conditions. Store food items in tight containers to keep them away from moisture and bacteria.
Do you have some tips to share with us? Let us know in the comments below.