OzHarvest Australia: Reducing Food Waste

June 25, 2019

Communiteer Team, Communiteer


OzHarvest CEO Ronni Kahn brings to light the devastating impacts of food waste on our climate. 

“We are purchasers of food and we are wasters of food. Food is so precious, wasting it makes absolutely no sense,” says Kahn, Ozharvest


The Food Waste Cycle with OzHarvest

The food waste cycle begins in our homes. When we are cleaning out our fridge, we throw out items that were unused or still edible. 35% of the average household bin is made up of food waste, reports the NSW Environmental Protection Authority.

Throwing out food after it has been purchased, goes beyond the impact on our wallets. The Australian Government estimates that deciding to throw out food costs our economy $20 billion each year

Food waste is a prevalent problem worldwide. If food waste was a country, it would be the third-highest global greenhouse gas emitter. More than 1.3 billion tonnes of food is thrown out each year, representing 3.3 billion tonnes in annual carbon dioxide emissions.

2 Tips for the Responsible Food Consumption

1.Make a Meal Plan

Planning out meals for the week and making a detailed shopping list with ingredients that are needed is a way to ensure that you don’t buy too much food when you go shopping. This yields a dual benefit of saving money and embarking on a healthy eating journey. 

Meal planning can be achieved with the guidance of a meal-planning app. There is a range of apps catered to realising the goal of eating healthy food and planning healthy meals.

 It is a worthwhile endeavour to invest in a healthier and more sustainable lifestyle. Free meal planning apps are a great way to start if you would like to maintain and stay on a budget. You can even find ones that are designed to meet all dietary requirements, including vegetarian and vegan options. 

2. Buy Fewer Groceries, More Frequently

Replenish fresh produce and other perishables every few days, rather than buying them for the whole week. You will get to enjoy fresh fruit and veggies while reducing the amount of food that is purchased and not eaten. 

Australians send 4 million tonnes of food to landfill each year, according to Ozharvest. That amounts to $8 billion worth of fresh food, leftovers, packaged and long-life products, drinks, frozen food and takeaways being thrown in the bin. 

The Responsible Shopper Challenge

You can start minimising your carbon footprint through eating smart. We challenge you to make a meal plan for the next week and make a shopping list, to ensure you buy the items you need. 

Keep a record of all the food items you throw out this week, whether it is takeaway or fresh produce. This will help you understand the type of food items that regularly end up in the bin. 

Once you know your food waste, you can continually improve your spending and consumption habits.

Learn how to reduce food waste and volunteer for food security by reaching out to OzHarvest!

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