The best option to get rid of your food waste


Updated on October 25, 2019


The question around what to do with your food waste can be tricky. Here is a list of ways to reduce its impact: 1. REDUCE: Obviously, the best way is to reduce the amount of food you need to throw away. But it's not always easy to get the right amount of food you'll actually need when doing your grocery shopping. Changes of plan gives life its spiciness I guess. 2. GIVE AWAY: So then you second best option is to give it to someone that may use it either to eat it or to feed their pets or chickens, if you are lucky enough to live in a rural area. 3. COMPOST: Also depending on where you live, your city may collect food waste for compost. Please participate in that program if this is the case. You can also start your own composting if you have an external space. There are also in-home options, but with smaller capacity. 4. GARBAGE DISPOSAL: if you have one (many older sinks do not) can be used to dispose of food. The food that you put down will likely end up in a wastewater treatment plant where food waste can be recycled and used to fertilize crops, which is why it’s better than going to the landfill where the same food waste will emit strong greenhouse gases, such as methane. The following items are known to clog the drain, so avoid to put them your garbage disposal: greasy items, such as butter or oil, pasta or rice, egg shells, celery, potatoes, orange or banana peels, or seeds. 4. LANDFILL: And last but not least, the least environmentally friendly option and last resort for disposing of food waste is putting food in the trash bin to go to the landfill.

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If you see restaurants, stores, or other types of companies that are incorporating sustainability, consider choosing these options and make your support for sustainability known. It encourages other businesses to become sustainable as well. You may also come across a nonprofit or community organization that you believe is doing valuable work. Why not donate or reach out to see how you can support their efforts? You can consider volunteering, even if it’s only for one day, to give back to the local area you’re visiting.

Carry and use washable, reusable utensils when possible.

Many airlines are now offering passengers the option to purchase carbon offsets when booking a flight, which means you can pay extra to fund a project that reduces GHG emissions, “neutralizing” your flight. Carbon offset projects include supporting forest conservation in California, capturing GHG emissions from landfills in South Carolina, or renewable energy in Texas. Airlines are also taking measures to reduce their own environmental impact such as making planes and fleets more energy efficient and looking for alternative sources of energy.

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Using reusable bags (cloth, paper, or plastic) or hand-carrying items (if you’re only picking up a few things) both are ways to cut down on plastic waste. Many cities have banned plastic bags altogether, and some stores now charge for bags that just a few years ago were free. Even if your city hasn’t made the move on plastic bags yet, you can take matters into your own hands by remembering your reusable bags.

We tend to make too much food for parties. This is especially true during the holidays since it’s usually part of the holiday culture to make sure everyone has all the food and beverage they can handle, and then some. This excess is ultimately bad for the environment. However, tracking your RSVPs closely and keeping a headcount should help you avoid making this classic mistake that ultimately contributes to food waste. Of course, some extra food is not disastrous (everyone loves leftovers), but it is something to be mindful of.

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