So Zero Waste Week kicks off tomorrow!
For… erm…A week!
As I said in yesterday’s post, I am taking part in the initiative in an attempt to reduce my food waste. How easy is that going to be?
Let me tell you a little about my situation…
I live in Scotland with my partner and our two young children. He works five days a week and I am at home looking after the children and fitting in whatever I can around that. For a few years my efforts focussed solely on keeping them safe, fed and happy, with the odd few minutes allocated to shoving any mess under the bed and running a wet wipe over the bathroom. Happily now I have graduated to some cooking, recycling, blogging and…shoving any mess under the bed and running a wet wipe over the bathroom!
Here’s a picture of us drawn by my eldest – that’s me second from the left.
So my priorities are my children, what they eat, trying to be a little bit responsible about the environment and writing (my own little indulgence).
Attempting to reduce my food waste ties in nicely with what’s important to me. I spend a significant chunk of each day planning what we will eat as a family and then preparing it. I am aware of the food waste that we produce and have even done a previous post on it but I have been focussing mainly on the waste that I produced as a result of preparing food as opposed to the food that is actually wasted in the process of me feeding the family.
I believe that food shouldn’t be wasted in my family – here’s why:
• One person (me!) coordinates all of the meal planning, the shopping & cooking so it should be possible to limit excesses;
• The children and my other half are great eaters and will devour most of what they are given;
• None of us have to restrict our food consumption due to weight issues.
Before pondering over the subject of food waste reduction, I would have guessed we weren’t especially guilty of that particular crime – perhaps the odd piece of fruit or veg every now and again.
Over the last few days though, I decided to take a picture when I saw food in our house going to waste. I was shocked:
A left-over portion of bean casserole
2 red onions that got wet at the back of the fridge
Four of a batch of 12 muffins that failed to get iced
A significant pile of flour that fell of the plate when I was measuring out the ingredients for bread
Some leftover sheets of lasagne
A tub of hummus that got lost in the fridge
The end bits of a loaf of bread
Some potatoes left over from the veg box that I couldn’t face peeling as they were so small and the potatoes from the next veg box had arrived
Some bicarbonate of soda that had got separated from its lid in my cupboard
Some ham that I’d not refrigerated quickly enough due being distracted because I had friends round
That wasn’t even everything! To be honest, I do feel ashamed about this waste. For me, obviously I’m concerned about the harm that food waste does to the environment when it is disposed of and starts to decompose, but the main issue is the moral argument.
Food poverty is soaring in Britain with 3 new foodbanks opening each week in the UK, according to the Trussel Trust and here I am buying food that I’m not using. I can’t justify it.
Let’s see if I can use this week to make a difference. Please join me tomorrow on the blog as I make a start.