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5 Ways to Reduce Food Waste for Earth Day that will Slow Climate Change

We love all the amazing charity organizations all over the world. They take on the hard work that governments don’t have the capacity to do locally. They look at both small and big issues locally and globally and find the best ways to serve. One of our local friends here in Vancouver, Canada just shared their recent TEDx Talk that made us rethink how we use and consume food and how we can reduce food waste starting today.  With Earth Day right around the corner along with Do1Give Day, we think this will give you the inspiration to give through food.

How can we create less and reduce food waste?

This will not be new news. There is enough food for everyone in our world but so much is wasted. Let’s make reducing your food waste and turning it into something good for our planet your call to action for Do1Give Day!

A special thanks to Executive Director of the Food Stash Foundation: Carla Pellegrini for her insight, hard work, and 5 ways we can all take action starting today!

 

At Food Stash Foundation, giving is at the core of what we do. Food Stash is a Vancouver-based charity established in 2016 that rescues over 130,000 pounds of good, surplus food from being wasted each month and gives it to the community in a few dignified ways.

We give back to our planet and our community every day. Seven days a week, we pick up perfectly good food from grocery stores and wholesalers that isn’t being sold and we give it a second chance to still be eaten through our home delivery program for folks with disabilities. Our weekly market is open to everyone, and we deliver to our 36 community partners, who collectively serve over 12,000 people per week.

Food Waste & Climate Change

In Canada alone, over 50% of the food we produce is never eaten! And food waste is a big driver of climate change. Think of all the energy and resources that go into growing, packaging, and transporting food. Then, if food ends up in landfills, it generates methane, a harmful greenhouse gas that is 80 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

“Climate change is a daunting problem to fight. We’re all supposed to eat less meat, stop flying so much and conserve water…It’s pretty exciting that we can fight climate change simply by not wasting food!”  This is what Carla Pellegrini, Executive Director at Food Stash Foundation, said in her recent TEDx talk about food waste. Here are five everyday ways we can all have an impact and give back to our planet.

fight food waste

5 Everyday Ways to Reduce Food Waste and Fight Climate Change

1. Buy the ugly produce

A big reason why perfectly good food doesn’t get bought in the store and therefore often gets thrown out is because of what it looks like. Just because a carrot has two legs or an apple has a little bruise, doesn’t mean it’s not just as delicious as the more “perfect” looking fruits and veggies.

2. Rethink date labels

Only five foods in Canada expire and they’re things like baby formula and meal replacements. Expiration dates are about nutrition, whereas best before dates are about freshness. Most foods that we eat, including milk and dairy products, have best before dates that indicate when they are the freshest. That doesn’t mean they won’t still be good to eat after the date! Trust your senses – do the smell and taste test. If it smells, looks, and tastes okay, it’s probably perfectly good to eat!

3. Plan your meals

Meal planning is a great way to make sure we don’t purchase more food than we need for a given time period. Before you go to the store, map out a couple of meals that are reasonable for you to make that week. Take a photo of your pantry and fridge so you only buy what you need.

4. Organize your fridge

Sometimes things can get lost in the back of our fridges! Make an “eat me first” section of your fridge so you can keep track of those leftovers that need to get eaten or the herbs that need to be used.

5. Use your freezer

There are a surprising number of foods that do well in the freezer. If you know you’re not going to get around to eating something, toss it in the freezer and use it in your next soup or smoothie.

We hope these tips inspire you to rethink how you shop and interact with your food. Climate change is a daunting problem to fight, but we can all make a difference every day by wasting less food.

Join us on Thursday, April 25th for Do1Give Day. Use any or all of these ideas to take action. It takes Just ONE small act of giving to make a difference – it takes us all to change the world.

Sign up here to get everything you need to be part of the global giving movement that’s changing the world.

For more inspiring ideas for Do1Give Day check out these articles:

50 Ways to Spread Happiness with Giving

10 Ways to Embrace Do1Give Day in your School or Classroom

What people are saying about 365give

“I wanted to express my gratitude for the teaching you provided today. Your message was delivered eloquently, compassionately, and without judgment. The kids were engaged, and now have knowledge with which they can change the world. We all appreciated how you took the time to help us learn to build positive mindsets and practice happiness.”
Shelley Gardner, Grade 6 Ridgeview Elementary (West Vancouver)
“Actions really do speak louder than words, which is why I believe the 365give Challenge has resonated throughout my community. Every give we do is so important to us and leaves us happier and appreciating our lives a little bit more than before.”
Mahina Niyozova (Tajikistan)
“After watching the 365give TEDx Talk, I was inspired to join and begin a daily giving program in India. Today, along with 12 other volunteer women, we provide 100 meals to local underprivileged children in Bangalore for school every day.”
Deepika Ahuja, Mom (Bangalore, India)
“My life has greater meaning now.”
Renate Jorge, @BeKindBrazil and 365give Member, Family Program (Brazil)
“I just wanted to share that 365give really helped me. I am a better person now, thank you.”
MayLee, 365give Member, Individual Program
“This 365give Challenge has really injected excitement and extra enthusiasm in each work day as I think about what we can do. It has motivated me and the students.”
Cristina Peters, School Counselor (New York City, USA)
“I have seen a huge shift in energy throughout my classroom since doing the 365give Challenge. The Challenge has empowered my students to make a positive difference in the school’s community and beyond.”
Cella Adriana, Special Needs Educator /The Holliswood School (New York City, USA)
“The 365give Challenge helps students understand their impact on others. It opens avenues for introducing and discussing global and local issues in classrooms. It is powerful to watch students of all ages think about how they can make a change in another person’s life with one small act.”
Jessica Hall, Primary Teacher, French Immersion at École Pauline Johnson (West Vancouver, Canada)