Reducing Food Waste

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I don’t know about your home, but around mine it use to be that I would throw out a lot of perishable food each week.

How One Family Reduced the bulk of their food waste

I hated it, and I spent a few long runs and short showers trying to think of a solution. After playing around with several ideas, I came across one that works 90% of the time. The other 10% of the time that it fails is when I fail to do it.

I found that the biggest area of our food waste was in our fruits and vegetables and bigger cheese blocks.

These are all snack foods in our house, and if they were not in snack form, no one was taking the time to make them.

But when I took just 10 to 15 minutes immediately after putting the groceries away to cut up these items into snack size amounts, rarely does it go bad.

In fact, most times it gets eaten within a day or two. I store all the cut up fruit and cheese in containers that are see through, so that everyone looking for a snack can easily see whats available in the fridge.

I also do raw veggies that I know the kids like to snack on such as carrots or green peppers.

Since our family has 5 people who all eat like adults now, we were finding that the fridge was simply too full for the first few days after grocery shopping,and often a lot of the snack items would get pushed to the back and forgotten about, even if they were pre-cut.

Then one day, I decided to move our camping fridge out of the basement where we store it and put it to use on the main floor of our home as a snack fridge. It sits in our living room which is not ideal (post update, it now sits at the top of our basement stairs, in a nook just big enough for it and right off the kitchen so it is handy).

What is great about having a snack fridge is that my children no longer look to me to make them a snack, they go to the snack fridge at snack time and have many healthy snack choices at their finger tips.

Another thing is because of its small size the extra fridge doesn’t cost that much in electricity to run while cutting down our food waste caused by a too full fridge.

How about you? What do you do to avoid food waste in your home?

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  1. I try to find alternative uses for stuff….if some veggies are looking sad, ill throw them in the freezer to save to make a veggie stock, limp looking baby spinach can be cooked up for a hot dish, cheese thats getting a little hard is throw into soup or a sauce to make it richer.

  2. We have plenty of room in our regular refrigerator, but I also try to prepare produce right away to make it easier to use. Some things I also package in individual packages for lunches or traveling snacks then, too. I put grapes and carrots in small bags so they’ll actually get put in the lunches in the mornings.

  3. Great ideas! We buy fruit and veggies a lot and I seem to end up throwing away so much that doesn’t get used. In the summer I will compost it, but during the winter it is normally too cold and snowy to trek it to our compost bin- either way… it is still waste if we are not eating it. We have an small refrigerator that we mainly have loaded with drinks, but a shelf for snacks sounds perfect!

  4. Yup, that is a GREAT idea with prepping the food right away! Thanks for sharing (stopped by from WFMW)

    • Thanks for visiting. I find the biggest hurdle in making myself spend those extra minutes doing it. Once I have shopped my 3 stores got it all home and got it all in the house and most of it put away, I am about done! I have to self talk my way through it, knowing I will thank myself later, when we waste less.

  5. I think a snack fridge is such a great idea! During the summer, we try to keep the kids from going into our fridge a lot since it can burn more electricity that way. Having a small snack fridge that uses less electricity would definitely be helpful! I think I’ll keep an eye out for one at our Goodwill.

    • Victoria says:

      You could also try Craigslist I bet a lot of college students get rid of theirs right around this time of year, as their school days come to an end.

  6. Great idea having a second smaller fridge. Having it all prepped definitely helps with smaller children being able to help themselves too.

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