Love Food, Hate Waste Encourages Victorians To Rethink Food Waste

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love food hate waste sustainability victoria

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MELBOURNE | Food waste is a hot issue at the moment. Most of us have heard something about it, but very few, including us, fully appreciate just how much food is wasted each year. This month, Sustainability Victoria launched their ‘Love Food Hate Waste‘ campaign, which aims to help Victorians reduce their household waste. We were invited to the launch of the campaign, and were surprised at some of the facts we learned.

On average, about 25% of the contents of our garbage bins is made up of avoidable waste. That is, food that was purchased with the intention of being eaten but was instead thrown away. Bread, pastry and biscuits the biggest contributor to this waste – 64,500 tonnes a year, while pre-prepared & home cooked meals come in at second place with 51,000 wasted tonnes per year. All up, a total of 250,000 tonnes of avoidable food waste is sent to landfill each year – crazy numbers!

It’s not just the food itself that’s wasted either. The environmental impact is huge when you consider the land, water and energy that’s used to produce, transport and store the food, and CO2 omissions that are expended throughout the process.

Even if you take all the environmental issues out of the equation, there’s still an economic incentive to reduce your household waste. A 2014 Sustainability Victoria study found that Victorian households estimate that they throw away up to $2,200 a year in wasted food. Imagine all of the things that you could do with an extra $2,200 in your pocket each year!

How can you start making a difference? Well it’s quite easy. Things as simple as planning the week’s meals, doing up a shopping list and sticking to it, re-using leftovers, and storing your food properly can make a huge difference. There are loads of tips, recipe ideas and more on the Love Food Hate Waste website, and plenty of our recipes use leftover to great effect – check out our Leftover Chicken Pasta Bake and Pulled Pork Lettuce Cup recipes.

At the launch we also got some insights into food waste by comedian Cal Wilson, who met up with three Victorian families to see what the waste situation was like at their homes, and to help them with a 4-week ‘Love A List’ challenge to cut their food waste and their grocery bill. It’s only 18 minutes long, very entertaining and informative, and well worth watching – we’re sure you’ll be inspired to participate in your own ‘Love A List’ challenge after watching it. You can find out more about the ‘Love A List’ challenge here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4Wqe6R2NlE

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