Surely many of us have heard about how to save water or electricity at home, but there is something that is not talked about so much and that can also bring us benefits in the domestic economy and is saving on food. This does not mean eating less, eating worse or depriving us of certain foods, but rather making the most of the foods we buy.
In this Green Ecology article, we will give you a series of tips on how to save food at home .
Why it is important to save on food at home
According to the data given by the United Nations Organization for Food and Agriculture (FAO), a third of the food produced on the planet ends up as waste in the garbage . This translates into around 1,300 million tons of garbage per year and the forecasts are for these figures to continue increasing. The European Commission, this waste in Europe reaches 89 tons per year and if we consider each individual citizen, about 179 kilos of garbage.
Therefore, it is a big problem due to production, pollution, the money we lose each one by poorly managing the purchase and conservation of food, as well as the simple fact that food is being wasted when many people can not even eat. daily.
The goal of these 9 tips to save food , we will give you below, is not only to reduce the annual waste of food, but also to save money on food or to promote a more efficient and equitable distribution of resources.
Weekly planning of the food so as not to waste it
The Planning a weekly menu is an effective way to adapt food purchases to actual consumption at home. That is to say, if we more or less know what we are going to cook, we can avoid an excessive purchase in food and the possibility that those foods are spoiled by not consuming them.
The weekly menu that must be planned must be complete and provide a variety of nutrients, since it also does not consist of having an inadequate diet. For example, a complete menu has 5 daily servings of fruit and vegetables, between 2 and 4 weekly servings of legume and 3 or 4 meats and fish.
Check the expiration date to save food
Sometimes, we do not look at the expiration date when buying a food , which can be spoiled without us noticing. Regarding this, we must distinguish the difference between the expiration date, the food begins to spoil from that moment, and preferential consumption, the food loses properties, but does not spoil, from that date.
A food can be eaten after its preferred consumption date (although it is advisable to do so before), but not after its expiration date. As a trick, in many supermarkets or stores, they place the products closest to their expiration on the shelves.
Preparing homemade meals is better than buying them made
It is more economical and healthy to prepare meals at home , before ordering them at home or even buying them precooked. An example that can be done at home is pizza. Pizza made at home has less fat, salt and preservatives than the purchased one. In addition, you can use the ingredients that you like and then use them for other foods. A trick to not be lazy to prepare them to have frozen pizza bases or buy them in the supermarket.
Make the most of the fruit
In any home it is typical that certain fruits are passed or that they are about to pass, with which much fruit is wasted. A trick is to make a fruit salad or cake with the fruits that are about to be passed. In the event that you have bought too much fruit, one tip is that it is much better preserved in syrup, compotes or marmalade . In this way, we will avoid wasting fruit because too much has been spent.
Put order in the freezer
To freeze, it is advisable to freeze the food in small portions or in individual pieces, in order to defrost what is necessary according to the number of diners. In addition, it is well to indicate the date of its freezing , so we can avoid saving them an excessive time. Another tip, which is not directly related to food, is to clean the ice and frost freezer, as it consumes less energy.
Make good use of the fridge to save food
This is one of the most important tips to save on food . Keeping food in order helps to extend its shelf life. You also have to control the temperature, which must be between 1ºC and 5ºC and avoid opening the door too much, since in addition to damaging the food, it increases the energy consumption.
A good way to order the refrigerator or refrigerator can be the following:
- Place the meat and fish in the coldest areas.
- Cover the meat with aluminum foil or put it in containers with grids to prevent its juices from contacting the other foods.
- Keep the fish completely clean.
- If we put the fruit and vegetables in the refrigerator, remember to open the bags to breathe.
- Save the cut sausages in closed containers, so that they last longer. Ideally, place them on the center shelf.
Pay attention to the containers
Foods are best stored in containers that are properly closed and in which they are more full, as they store less air inside, which means that the oxidation of food is less and, therefore, they stay longer. An interesting option to keep foods for a long time in perfect condition is a vacuum packing machine.
Do not store too much food
We must try to have a cupboard in which none of the essential ingredients such as flour, salt, sugar, oil, pasta, legumes or preserves are missing. However, often the offers that are in the supermarkets lead us to buy much more than we need , and in some cases, they can be spoiled by not consuming them on time.
So, we must take into account not buy more than what is really necessary and not get carried away by the offers if they are not really going to benefit us.
Monitor the pantry to avoid wasting food
It is advisable to check the pantry at least once a week , as there may be foods that have been stored so long that they spoil.
One idea is to place in front of the foods closest to their expiration date and behind them, the longest. In this way, foods that are likely to spoil before and will not be forgotten will not be hidden from view. In addition, every time we look, we can go pointing what you need to buy.