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Cut Down on Holiday Food Waste

November 30, 2017

How the American Home Has Evolved

It might surprise you to know that Americans throw away roughly $165 billion in uneaten food every year, according to government data. And about $277 million of that waste will happen during the holidays.

The very good news is that we can all do something about it. These fun and simple tips will help you cut down on your food waste, probably save you money and you will put less waste in our landfills. It’s all about planning your menu more thoughtfully and getting others in on the plan.

Here goes:

  • Coordinate recipes with friends and family so you don’t end up with 3 green bean casseroles (unless if you want 3 green bean casseroles!). Setting up a shared Google Doc is a great way to simultaneously plan the meal with the friends and family you’re sharing the day with. It is the way of the future!
  • Prepare less by cutting recipes in half. If you can’t have Thanksgiving without sweet potato casserole and feel the need to make at least five other traditional side dishes, consider making a half recipe for one or all dishes, instead of full recipes. Why make recipes that serve ten if you are only serving 5 people? 
  • Only buy the ingredients you need for your recipes. It’s hard to resist a two-pound bag of pecans in the heat of the moment at Costco, so maybe remember ahead of time that you can get nuts by the scoop from your smaller grocery store. And do you really need two bags of semi-sweet chocolate bits or will one bag do for that chocolate chip pumpkin bread?
  • Understand measurement conversions for your recipes before you go to the store. If you need 10 cups of flour for all your dinner roll and pie crust recipes, remember that bags of all-purpose flour are sold by the pound. So, if you plan by understanding any relevant measurement conversions, you can avoid buying two bags of flour “just in case.”

But the most important thing to remember about food waste is that there are many people in our community who won’t have enough to eat during the holidays and throughout the year.  By wasting less, you might be able to give more to the charity of your choice to help make sure that fewer people go hungry at a time when so many of us are counting our blessings.

Article provided courtesy of Mrs. Green’s World.

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