Let's Talk About Food Waste

David Beaver
Did you know that unfortunately a third of all food produced across the world goes to waste? Especially in developed countries like ours, this waste predominantly happens at home. We were chatting about this issue this morning at Root Kitchen HQ and thought we'd share some easy to follow tips to help you tackle food waste.

According to a report from Circular Economy & Resource Efficiency Experts WRAP almost 20% of all lettuce crops were left unharvested last year. This is equivalent to 38,000 tonnes of produce worth £7 million, with some farmers wasting 47% of their crop and this is all due to the fact they may have been miss-cut during harvesting, a little misshapen or have black spots which unfortunately makes them unacceptable to the supermarket buyers.

This waste occurs even before the lettuce has made it to the shops shelves and in to our baskets. When it comes to food waste within the home lettuce and salad leaves come top of the pile, with customers throwing away an unbelievable 40% of bagged salad!

So, here are three small changes you can make at home to play your part and save some of that lovely produce going to waste:

1. Purchase Whole Lettuces Instead of Bags
Whole lettuce heads stay fresh much longer than bags of salad. Head to your local green grocer and buy some loose heads of salad as whilst it may be a little extra effort to wash and prepare, it'll save you some money, reducing plastic packaging and, most importantly, save you having to throw those wilted old leaves in the bin.

2. Store Your Salad Leaves Correctly
Salad keeps for longer if it is correctly stored. The best way to store salad leaves is to wash, remove any damaged leaves and store in the veg drawer of your fridge in a reusable zip lock bag.

3. Grow Your Own
Have you ever tried to grow your own veg? It's really easy, all you need to do is head to your local garden centre and pick up a packet of “Cut-And-Come-Again” seeds and these will give you a continual crop of a variety of different leaves so you can make your own mixed salad. If you are feeling really green fingered you can also have a go at growing your own herbs so you don't have to buy individually plastic-wrapped herbs from the supermarket.

Also, did you know that if you replant the root of your standard shop bought lettuce in some potting compost and wait a couple of weeks later it will begin to grow again?

We'd also be really interested to hear any top tips you may have for keeping your veg fresh so feel free slide into our DM's on instagram or send us an email via hello@rootkitchen.uk

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