Earlier this year, panic buying led to surreal scenes at supermarkets and grocery stores, with shelves stripped bare, and fruit and vegetables left untouched in favor of nonperishable items. In our quest to stock up for tough times, we’re buying more, but unfortunately, we are also wasting more.
Some sobering food waste statistics:
What if there was a way to make our leftovers tasty, but also reuse them in a way that brings greater abundance, better skin and cleaner homes? Cue food upcycling.
There are plenty of great sources to help us use our leftovers in everything from stocks, broths and soups, to creative salads and vegetable mashes for the freezer. A quick Google search for recipes for leftovers will leave you spoiled for choice.
But did you know that your leftovers can be upcycled outside of the kitchen, as well? Here are some creative tips I picked up from an awesome organization, called Move for Hunger.
Sometimes, however, if food is left too long, it is simply no longer safe nor desirable to eat, pickle, pulverise or polish. It’s then that we need to get creative to avoid sending food waste to landfills, which, when broken down anaerobically (without oxygen), it produces a massive amount of methane.3
Why not keep those fruit and veggie scraps to start a worm farm? Starting a worm farm can not only reduce your carbon footprint but also that wonderful worm waste is an indulgent treat for your plants. For tips on how to start yours, visit Sustainable Gardening Australia.
So, whether you’re pickling, pulverising, polishing, adding a healthy glow or cleaning stubborn stains, remember that your best friend can be sitting in the kitchen, just waiting to be creatively upcycled!
1Gustavsson, J. et al. 2011. Global Food Losses and Food Waste. http://www.fao.org/3/a-i2697e.pdf
2Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. 2012. SAVE FOOD: Global Initiative on Food Loss and Waste Reduction. http://www.fao.org/save-food/resources/keyfindings/infographics/fruit/en/
3Tuton, H., 2020. Worms and Worm Farms. https://www.sgaonline.org.au/worms/