Here at EcoVibe, we’re always looking for ways we can reduce our impact on the environment, and Christmas-time is no exception! Kitchen waste comes in lots of forms, whether that’s from food packaging, leftover food or even our cleaning routine. With this in mind, we wanted to share our top tips for fighting kitchen waste. Check them out and share your own tips & tricks in the comments below.
1. Source your ingredients consciously
Plan and prepare
Producing, moving, storing and cooking food uses loads of energy, fuel and water. Each of which let off greenhouse gases contributing to climate change. When you think about that, and the fact that roughly one-third of the food made for human consumption is wasted each year, we can really appreciate how we need to cut down what we shop for and be more conscious consumers! Think of a pack of cheese - all the resources that go into raising the cows, producing and transporting the cheese, even the fuel we use to drive to the shop to buy it. That's a lot of wasted effort if it's just chucked away at the end of the week.
But how to do that? Write lists (and check them twice, or three times if necessary!) before you shop to make sure you’re not buying items you’ve already got in the pantry. As well, thank about realistic portion sizes. We all love to over-indulge over the festive period, but with a staggering 74 million mince pies being thrown away each Christmas and 4.2 million plates of turkey going straight in the bin, we can all be more mindful about what can realistically eat!
Another easy way to reduce your environmental impact when food shipping is to buy food that doesn’t come in any wasteful plastic packaging, as food packaging makes up a huge portion of all rubbish in landfills! Shopping at locally at markets is great for this, with the added bonus that these veg often travel less distance to get to shops too so have a lower carbon footprint.
Buy reusable items
While we can get lots of food zero waste with no packaging, unfortunately, some items are much trickier than others. If you need to buy an item with packaging, try to buy items you can reuse once you’ve finished with the contents. For example, while cans cannot (easily!) be reused, bottles are always handy for keeping tap water cool in the fridge and jam jars are perfect for reusing at your local zero waste shop or as candle holders.
Reduce your meat
This might be a controversial option for some of the meat lovers among us, but it’s definitely worth considering. Eating meat has a pretty hefty impact on the environment, creating deforestation as farmers make way for livestock, along with methane emissions from cows and fertiliser use creating as much greenhouse gas emissions as all the world’s cars, trucks and aeroplanes. That doesn’t mean you need to go cold turkey (get it?!), but why not look into replacing a couple of dishes with vegetarian alternatives.
Could you consider going organic? Organic farming helps create healthy living soil that’s more resistant to drought, floods and consequently the impacts of climate change. The lack of pesticides and wider variety of plants also helps enhance biodiversity!
2. Look after your leftovers
If there’s anything you can’t squeeze in, make sure to store it safely in the fridge to keep it fresh and prevent it from turning. Food wax wraps are perfect for this as they’re 100% natural and plastic-free, still breathable and can keep your food fresh for an extra 3-4 days – check our full collection here.
This will give you an extra couple of days to plan out what you can use your leftovers for. Challenge yourself to get creative, turkey can famously be used in sandwiches for days after, but why not try adding it to a curry or ramen dish instead? Toss leftover rice and pasta into soups, and even make pizzas with your leftover sprouts! And don’t chuck out any leftover veggie scraps, make your own homemade vegetable stock, pour into an ice cube tray and you won’t need to buy stock cubes in future either!
3. Clean Green
Christmas is about relaxing, spending time with friends and family and enjoying yourself, so the last thing you want to be worrying about is if your cleaning products are harming the environment. But don’t worry, it’s really easy to clean green!
Washing the plates: Whizz through the dishes with our dish washing soap bar, which easily cleans stubborn grime and grease on your dish, pots and pans.
Washing up roasting trays: When fat’s baked on at a high temperature, it’s the most difficult foodstuff to shift! But don’t worry, we’ve got your back, try our coconut scourer and you’ll easily cut down on your scrubbing time
Kitchen surfaces: Our water-soluble cleaning sachets are the perfect way to ditch plastic and clean your house in a safe, non-toxic way. Simply pop one of these nifty sachets in an empty bottle with warm water and spray away!
Clearing the rubbish: Gather any non-reyclables for in our compostable bin liners and help cut down the amount of plastic you use. For food waste, check out our caddy liners or for regular rubbish, check out our full-sized bin liners available in both 30L and 50L.
Do you have any other tips for reducing waste in the kitchen this Christmas? Let us know in the comments below, we’d love to hear from you!