What A Waste! 10 Ways to Reduce Food and Container Waste

Waste vegetables and a jar on a table in bottle depot

Act on the saying “waste not, want not” by reducing waste in your kitchen. The busiest room in the house is also the biggest culprit for producing garbage. Think about all the spoiled food, cereal boxes, and milk cartons that pile up daily. To help protect the environment you can come up with creative ways to use, save, and package your ingredients.

Reducing food waste is an eco-friendly initiative that keeps garbage out of landfills, leading to cleaner air. Due to a lack of oxygen in landfills, the bacterium in waste produces methane gas. You can reduce the amount of harmful gas by doing your part to recycle. Take a step to help save the planet by changing the way you work in the kitchen.

Food and Container Waste Reduction

  1. Visit a Calgary NE Bottle Depot – Instead of disposing of all your milk cartons, juice containers, and cans, take them to a bottle depot. These facilities will sort and recycle your containers allowing the materials to be repurposed into new items. This way you are taking part in reducing the need for raw materials like oil, plants, and gas. This helps preserve natural resources and prevents containers from being thrown out and ending up in the waterways, harming wildlife.
  2. Add Some Coffee to It – Add spent coffee grounds to the dirt where your vegetables, flowers, and plants grow. Coffee grounds are acidic and acid-loving plants like carrots, azaleas, and hydrangeas will benefit from the added nutrients.
  3. Freeze – Did you forget about those farm-fresh berries you bought? They might be a little too mushy to eat on their own but are still plenty delicious when used in smoothies. Freeze your overripe fruits and berries then turn them into a smoothie for a refreshing, energizing drink on a hot day. Frozen fruit also makes a great healthy snack for you and your family.  Yum!
  4. Scrap Free – Forget about scrapping perfectly good ingredients just because you think they can no longer be used. Learn from other cultures that never let anything go to waste. After peeling your onions for that wild rice dish, add the skins and small bits to stock to make a delicious soup. You can even use other vegetables that are still fresh, but just a little droopy, to really add flavour to your broth. The more scraps you have, throw them in and see how the mix of many ingredients comes together to form a yummy meal while reducing food waste.
  5. Re-Growth – Take the pit from your fruit and make a new plant out of it. Avocados and mangos are great so give this a try.  All you need to do is wash the pit, place it in some potting soil and with a little time and care, voila, you’ll have a little tree growing.
  6. Re-Purpose – Just as glass can be repurposed into artisanal products, vegetables and spices can be repurposed into a dye. Natural colours from things like beets and turmeric reduce the need for chemical dies while limiting food waste at the same time.
  7. Citrusy Deterrence – Are you full? Instead of throwing out the rest of your grapefruit, put it in the garden with the cut side down. This will attract slugs and other pests stopping them from eating your garden’s leafy greens. They can munch down on your leftovers instead. 😉
  8. Get Clean – Since you only eat the inside of the lemon, use the rind as a cleaning product. Lemon rind is anti-bacterial and can act as a bleaching agent to shine up and remove spots in your kitchen and bathroom. This way, you can save money on purchasing expensive cleaning products. 
  9. Keeping Things Fresh – Purchase eco-friendly containers that can be reused and seal in the flavour of whatever you put in them. Leftover food can then be frozen and re-heated weeks later without a nasty freezer-burnt taste.
  10. Herblicious – If you have herbs that are dying, save them and dry them out. Once they are fully dry you can add them to a mini container and use the dry ingredients in your next dish. You can even save sad-looking herbs in ice cube trays with some olive oil for use later to add flavour to your homemade sauce.

A poster in a bottle depot in Calgary with Fight, Food, Waste written on it

Dual Reduction

When you use ingredients in creative ways you can reduce the negative environmental impact and your food costs. By using more of what you have, you end up buying less at the grocery store. These savings can go a long way. Extra cash is great for that upcoming vacation or those new boots you’ve been eyeing.  Reducing food waste and eliminating container trash can be easy, especially with the help of recycling at Happy Can Bottle Depot.

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