I was amazed when I discovered that my kitchen waste actually has an enormous impact on climate change.
“Wasting food has irreversible environmental consequences: it wastes the water and energy it took to produce it, and generates greenhouse gases—7 percent of the world’s emissions9—like methane, carbon dioxide and chlorofluorocarbons, which contribute to global warming. Food that sits decaying in landfills also produces nitrogen pollution, which causes algae blooms and dead zones. According to the World Wildlife Federation, the production of wasted food in the United States is equivalent to the greenhouse emissions of 37 million cars.”
Americans waste 30 to 40% of their food supply; that equals 219 pounds of food per person each year.
The good news is there is something we can do: freezing food is one of the quickest ways we have to preserve food, and preserving food, instead of discarding it, is what we need to do.
Actually, there are many benefits to freezing foods:
Most of us have the experience of losing food in the freezer, that deep, dark place where food goes in and unknown blobs come out. Definitely not appetizing.
If that is your experience, the best thing to do is to clear it out. I know discarding food is not the objective but if you aren’t going to eat it, you need the space and a few rules about how to fill it.
Freezing only works if we use the food we freeze. Instead of heading to the store, we need to go to our freezers to see what’s for dinner and only head to the store to supplement what we already have.
It has taken a while but I’m starting to look at the food in my refrigerator differently. I think about what I need to do to insure I do not let the food go to waste. It's a start.
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Having a party again is simply wonderful. Every summer, Mark, my husband, makes a gigantic paella and we invite friends to watch the process (trust me, it is a show) and eat the amazing results. The party always occurs between the 4th of July and the 14th, Bastille Day. Are you wondering why we make a paella to . . .