Food Waste is a Choice

Head of celery, sold as a vegetable. Usually o...

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Thank you Roger for including us in the Yakezie Carnival at The Amateur Financier.

Today I interrupted my regularly scheduled meal plan for celery soup.  I had to. When I reached into the refrigerator produce bin I saw the saddest bunch of celery I’d ever seen. I’d bought it with the intention of making celery grape juice. (I know it sounds a little off, but it’s really great to start the morning with fresh juice courtesy of my Blendtec). Our mornings have gotten away from us and the celery that greeted me was limp and sad….but it wasn’t slimy. When I see wilted vegetables I think soup. It can be “kitchen sink” soup, or vegetable specific.

According to a recent Food Network special, “The Big Waste” (where celebrity chefs were challenged to create a gourmet banquet from food headed for the trash), 40% of the food we produce is never eaten.

Maybe you saw the commercial for food storage, where the lady orders food and asks the butcher not to wrap half of it. “I’m just going to throw it out anyway.” I shudder everytime that commercial comes on. I can’t imagine what someone spends on food each month, if they throw out half of it.

Wasting food is a choice. It’s an active decision. It’s what happens when you refuse to look in your refrigerator, and go out to eat instead. I know, because I stupidly ate bagels instead of drinking my celery juice.

How do you avoid food waste?

  1. Eat with a plan. Meal plans keep you purchasing only items that you plan to eat immediately, or that you’ll be freezing for a later date.
  2. Watch your portions. Your pot and your plates should only feed the people that are eating, and only in healthy amounts.
  3. Don’t buy in bulk just because it’s a good deal. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve bought food in bulk and it’s gone bad because there’s only two people in my house, not twelve. I solved this with a Foodsaver so that I only use buying in bulk to save on cooking for a large group, or lock in my sales price over several meals.

The celery soup my family had tonight was the best I’d made in a long time. It’s going to be great tomorrow for lunch. I can’t figure out if it tasted better because I was eating healthy, because I was being financially responsible, or because I was having a culinary moment. I’d like to think it was all three, but two out of three ain’t bad.

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2 Responses to “Food Waste is a Choice”

  1. What a great post! My wife and I hate when we end up wasting food, and we are now much more careful about what we purchase. We come up with “loose” meal plans, and then shop accordingly.

    We still have trouble with buying spinach for salads (or even bags of salad) and having to throw a portion out. The soup idea would probably be great for something like that!

    • Andi B. says:

      Any meal plan is a great way to go. And spinach gives you a lot of options. You can make spinach dip, add it into fresh pasta, and wilted sauteed spinach is really quite yummy.

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