Today we will be considering food waste. Think about your weekly or monthly use of food. How much do you throw away? Why does that happen – does food go off because you bought too much, or are you throwing food away because you cooked too much? Do you buy in bulk because it is cheaper but then you have too much of a certain fruit or vegetable and it goes off?
List the practical ways in which you can reduce your food waste for example, look through my cupboards regularly and check packages for sell by date. Work out a system for giving food away if you think it will reach its sell by date. Club together with neighbours when you buy in bulk so that you can swop items when you buy in bulk. Find out where the local soup kitchen is and drop foods with them. Share your food pledge with others!
What is the problem with food waste?
In South Africa, a third of food is never consumed and ends up at rubbish dumps, when there are millions of South Africans who go hungry. 10 million tons go to waste! Most of the waste are fruits and vegetables.
It is not only the food that is wasted – the energy that is wasted in growing and transporting that food could power the City of Johannesburg for 4 months!
And all the water that was wasted in irrigating the crops would fill
over 600 000 Olympic swimming pools – a massive waste for SA, the 30th driest country on the planet.
About 90% of food waste in SA is disposed of to landfills, where it produces methane which is almost thirty times worse than carbon dioxide as a heat trapping gas.
So today, consider how you shop, cook and store your food. Work out better ways to save and give away. Make the pledge to reduce food waste this Lent. Do your little bit of good.