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Zero Food Waste

I found out about a very cool initiative on Jamie and Jimmy’s Friday Night Feasts called a community fridge. The idea is that people can bring any unused food to a fridge in the local community which is accessible to anyone. Many grocery stores and bakeries contribute too and share food that is on or reaching its best before date. I love this idea because so many of us have food in the fridge that they know they aren’t going to use and it gets thrown in the bin. Plus it’s just a nice way to give back.

OzHarvest in Australia do something similar. They rescue unwanted/unused food from commercial food entreprises and deliver it to charities and people in need.

It’s an area that I have become more and more interested in. I recently attended an excellent workshop called Love Food Hate Waste. It was organised by Change Makers Donegal (Ireland). Joanne and Grainne spoke about food miles, food waste- globally & locally, zero waste and sustainable development goals. In Ireland a staggering one million tonnes of food every year is wasted with a third of this being household food waste.

It has made me more conscious of where my produce is sourced from and the distance it has travelled. I now purposely choose items which are produced locally where possible. I buy fruit and veg from the local farmer’s market and try and buy seasonal produce as this is when it’s at its best and also there’s normally a glut meaning the produce is cheaper to buy.

I’ve found that meal planning has helped reduce my food waste, ensuring that I re-use the same ingredients in multiple dishes throughout the week.

Another area which I want to investigate that was discussed at the workshop is local cooperatives where you can pool together and buy certain food items in bulk such as cereals and oil. This is a brilliant idea.

I still love my grapes and we don’t have the ambient climate in Ireland for growing these and let’s face it, who doesn’t like a bit of smashed avocado every now but even if I could achieve the 70/30 rule of buying local it can’t but help.

Would love if you could share your recipes which use up food which would normally be thrown out.

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