Waitrose & Partners is committed to helping customers tackle food waste at home and ahead of ‘Zero Waste Week’ the supermarket has some top tips to help customer tackle waste at home.
The ‘LiveWise’ section on Waitrose.com is packed with environmentally friendly tips, recipes and leftovers ideas, as well as more than 100 clever kitchen hacks to help make sure food that’s still fit to eat is never wasted. Here are the top five tips to get you started:
1. Know your dates
Looking at dates on packaging can be daunting, but you can ignore ‘best before’, ‘display by’ and ‘sell-by’ dates. ‘Use by’ is the only one you need to abide by as it refers to safety. Food can be eaten up to the end of this date but not after – even if it looks and smells fine.
2. Think first
Before you throw something away, think about whether it could be put to another use. For example will it go in a stock? Can it be frozen?
3. Make a list
Making a list stops you buying things you don’t need or duplicating items you already have. Try photographing the inside of your fridge as a reminder of what you have and go through your cupboards, fridge and freezer every few days to keep track.
4. Apply FIFO
That’s ‘First In, First Out’. When you unpack your shop, organise food by use-by date – new products go at the back, older ones come to the front. That way you’re less likely to forget about food.
5. Befriend the fridge
7 out of 10 fridges are kept too warm. Keep yours at 5C. At this temperature food lasts longer and is also more resistant to food poisoning bugs. It’s colder at the bottom so keep perishables such as meat and dairy there, and keep fruit in the fridge for tip-top freshness. Always keep fruit separate from veg as some fruits such as bananas give off natural gases as they ripen, which can affect their neighbours.