As we reflect on what we’re grateful for and how we can make a positive impact this holiday season and beyond, we are continuing to be mindful in reducing our food waste, and we encourage all of you to do the same. Collectively, we can drive change both at work and home to support people and our planet.
DID YOU KNOW?
40% of all food produced in the U.S. ends up wasted, 43% of which comes from households. (Source: Natural Resources Defense Fund). And according to the World Wildlife Fund, we could reduce human-caused greenhouse gas emissions by 6-8% if we wasted less food. That is just a taste of the impact we can have when we choose to be mindful.
“Harvesting, transporting and packaging the food we consume uses natural resources. If we waste food, in turn we’re wasting those resources and unnecessarily producing greenhouse gas emissions. Not to mention the impact that has on the food insecure,” VP of Wellness & Sustainability Suzanne Landry shares.
Suzanne along with Division Wellness Director Michelle Sadlowski and Regional Wellness Director Leah Gayowski created a strategy to help you reduce food waste at home during the holidays.
First, start by creating a menu, then you can look for recipes and write a shopping list of what you need to buy. For a guide, check out NRDC’s “guest-imator” tool to help you create a menu based on the amount of people at your table.
Tip #2: Cook Root to Stem
“Root to stem” means you are eating all parts of the fruit or vegetable, including those that we typically toss away but are perfectly edible and nutritious. Select vegetables with 100% edible pieces like the skins of potatoes and some squashes, and the stems of broccoli and cauliflower. Not only are you reducing food waste but you’re also gaining fiber and beneficial nutrients.
- Trim the tough outer layer off broccoli stems and roast the tender inner stalk along with the florets
- Carrot tops can be used in your go-to pesto recipe
- Sauté beet greens with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper and add to roasted beets
- Save that parmesan rind and use it to enhance the flavor of your favorite holiday soup
- Fresh herbs are full of flavor. Finely chop the non-woody stems up and add to the dish you’re preparing
Tip #3: Freeze leftovers
A quick survey of your refrigerator every few days can help plan what foods can be frozen to prevent spoilage. Produce for example can be cooked and then frozen for a quick meal another time.
Tip #4: Compost
These days you may be cooking more at home than ever before. Those food scraps can be composted and used in your garden or a local community garden to nourish the soil. You can compost at home all year round. Here are some basics to get started.
During the holiday season and always, we’re working to reduce our food waste and carbon footprint. Compass Group’s proprietary measurement tool, Waste Not 2.0, provides data on how much food is wasted at work. It includes a dashboard that shares total waste as well as carbon and water footprint to help guide our marketplace teams to minimize food waste and make a positive impact.
Click the image to download the full recipe.
HUNGRY FOR MORE?
Mia Zavalij from Eatable joined us on the Eurest Feed with Our RDs Podcast to share a few more ways you can reduce food waste at home this holiday season.