4 Ways to Be More Sustainable with Your Food
It’s no secret that we love food over here but food can cause some major problems for our environment. In honor of Earth Day, we’re sharing some ways we can all be more sustainable when it comes to hitting the grocery store and opening our refrigerators.
- Store your food properly: The USDA estimates that between 30-40% of our food supply is WASTED. Whaaaat!? Let that sink in. More than $161 billion worth of food is THROWN AWAY per year. Waste happens at all levels of the food supply chain but we have the opportunity to eliminate food waste from our homes by storing food properly so it doesn’t go bad before we get to it in our fridge. Here are some tips:
- Carrots & celery: Store completely submerged in water to keep these veggies crispy and crunchy! Change the water every few days.
- Greens: Store in an airtight container with a paper towel or cloth to help absorb excess moisture.
- Avocados: We’ve NEVER only eaten a half avocado so we can’t quite relate to this one BUT if you find yourself with half an avocado, keep it from going brown by covering the surface with a little lemon juice or olive oil.
- Berries: Store in an airtight container. And when we say AIRTIGHT CONTAINER, we’re not talking about the plastic one that they come in with all the holes. Wash your berries, trim any tops off and store in a sealed container so they stay fresh and are ready to eat.
- Asparagus: Store upright in a mug or cup with water in it.
- Mushrooms: Store in a brown paper bag or airtight container with a cloth to absorb the excess moisture.
- Buy the ugly produce: Companies like Imperfect Produce and Misfits Market have sprung up and helped keep a lot of produce deemed not pretty enough for sale from ending up in a landfill but there’s still work to do in your own grocery store. Single bananas? Misshapen squash? Potatoes that turn and twist? They all taste just fine! Be the one to bring these items home with you so they don’t end up getting picked over and thrown out.
- Compost your scraps: Due to the lack of airflow inside a landfill, food scraps break down and create methane (a gas with 80x the warming power of carbon dioxide!!!) and we DEFINITELY don’t want that. On top of NOT creating methane, composting adds important nutrients back into our soil which allows crops to have higher yields and our food ends up being more nutrient dense too!
- Eat less meat (especially beef) and more plants: You didn’t think you were going to get through this list without hearing that, did you?? Beef production contributes to 6% of GLOBAL GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS. Just. Beef. On average, Americans eat 3 hamburgers worth of red meat per week. BUT THE GOOD NEWS IS, if we were to cut this number down to just 1.5 hamburgers worth, we would be able to sustainably feed the 10 billion people that are expected to be on the planet by 2050. So sounds like you can have your burger one night but swap your beef tacos for our Taco Bowl the next 😉