Jaynehowarth’s Weblog

Journalist and writer

Diary of a food throwaway. Week 4: a good one for the landfill

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By Jove, I think I’ve almost done it.
I’m four weeks into my challenge to reduce the amount of food I chuck away and this week has been excellent.
Hardly anything has been discarded, which means less rubbish for the landfill. Leftovers have, by and large, been used up, bread that is past its best has been whizzed into breadcrumbs and frozen and there are no out of date yoghurts lurking in the deeper recesses of the fridge. Yet.
Shopping lists have been drawn up for years in this household; it’s a weekly chore, but it means that every item put into the trolley is destined for a dish or two. Very little is bought on spec, although of course there are times when a new item or a few treat are bought.
Despite this, some of it never reaches our stomachs. It just goes from fridge to bin or compost.
So, why has the past week been so different? To be honest, I’m not sure and it’ll take a few weeks to see if this is an emerging pattern or a blip.
Interestingly, the food bill has not decreased while this experiment has been undertaken – so what is happening? Are we being sensible with the items we buy?
I did wonder last week if I was eating more to stop food going off and being thrown away. I’m not entirely sure that is the case, but I think I’m far more aware of what is in my cupboards and what needs to be consumed. This is especially the case of food in cold storage. The 16 tins of tomatoes in my store cupboard will keep for some time yet. (And, yes, I’ve been asked not to buy any more for a while…)
That said, there are two large tubs of Greek yoghurt that need to be eaten in the next couple of days, so I’d better get creative so they don’t get added to my list of shame.
Talking of which, here’s this week’s very short list:
2oz (approx) of cheddar
Half a packet of cereal hoops
A courgette (composted).
An estimated cost of this food is £1.50, which equates to £78 wastage over a year. This is huge progress, but before I give myself a pat on the back, it has to be sustained and not a one-off.
I’m looking forward to next week.

Written by CommonPeople

January 29, 2009 at 11:38 pm

Posted in Jayne's posts

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