Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Northern Beaches’ War on Waste

Catching up with friends and family this Easter and school holidays?  While good food is a great way to bring people together, over catering can bring about unnecessary food waste, which is bad for the environment and the wallet.

Sadly every year Australian households toss out an average of $3,800 worth of food, and food waste accounts for one third of our garbage in NSW1.

So it’s time to get some help. These tips will help you keep food fresh for longer, prevent food waste and save you money!


Avoid food spoilage. The Food Authority recommends:

  • keep the fridge below 5oC
  • put any food that needs to be kept cold in the fridge straight away
  • defrost and marinate foods in the fridge, especially meats.

Store foods correctly

Some, like celery, carrots, cucumbers and apples, will last longer in a reusable vegetable bag, container or wrapped in a clean damp tea towel.

Refrigerate fresh soft leaved herbs in a jar half filled with cold water and cover.

Take care of leftovers

Leftovers can be kept in the fridge for up to three days otherwise freeze them2. Remember to label and date them too.

Need some creative ideas on using leftovers? Join chef Sue Lambert’s workshop on Make Food Not Waste webinar. Also check out our video Reducing food waste with Chef Suzanne Lambert for some great recipes.

Foods to leave out of the fridge3.

Some fruits and vegetables such as bananas and pineapples last longer out of the fridge. You can stop bananas from ripening too quickly by wrapping the stem with a little foil.

Potatoes and onions should be stored in separate baskets in a cool dark place.

Store bread in a cool dark place, otherwise freeze it.

Know your dates4

‘Best before’: you can eat most food (except eggs) after a best before date if it has been stored correctly.

‘Use by’: do not eat any food after its use by date.

Keep the fridge door closed

Always close your fridge door to keep food fresh – even when you’re just getting milk for your tea or coffee.

If you still have foods that are no longer edible, throw them in your compost. Chickens also make great composters and are great feathered friends for the whole family.

Join our ‘Keeping Backyard Chicken’ workshops on Sunday 18 April. Get in quick, as spaces are limited for this popular workshop.

If you would like to learn more, check out some of our webinars & workshops on waste reduction.


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