Delicious food is one of the things people look forward to most at Christmas. From the dinner with all the trimmings, to all the treats and sweets in between.  And yet it’s estimated that two million turkeys, five million Christmas puddings and seventy-four million mince pies are thrown away each Christmas! (figures from the Waste and Resources Action Programme).

Our Waste Team have some tips to help save your food from ending up in the bin, which could also save you some money as well.

1.    Make a plan, work out what you are going to eat over the holidays and who is going to be with you.

2.    Write a shopping list for the festive season and when you go shopping stick to the list.

3.    Buy what you like to eat - if no one in the family eats sprouts don’t buy them!

4.    Understand the difference between labels: sell by is for the shop and no need to worry about that one, best before just means that its best to eat before that day but still okay after, use by is the important one - make sure you eat items before the use by date.

5.    Buy wonky! Lots of the supermarkets are now selling fruit and veg that previously would have been wasted – it might look a bit strange but still tastes good.

6.    Store everything in the right place - potatoes and onions in a cool dark spot, bananas away from other fruit and make sure your fridge is at the right temperature (under 50C) for those Christmas cheeses.

7.    Don’t forgot the freezer! Frozen veg and fruit taste great and you can just cook what you need.

8.    Leftovers! These are a great way to make your Christmas dinner stretch further. Leftover turkey can be used in pies, soups, stew, curries and much more. Also many things can be frozen including leftover roast potatoes, cheese and cream (just whip it up a bit first). Just freeze within two days of cooking and use with three months.

9.    Portion control - weigh pasta, rice and other food so you don’t end up cooking too much and throwing loads away.

10. If you have space get a composter. The Green Johanna is a hot composter that you can throw your unavoidable food waste, like veg peelings and cooked food such as bones, in and it will turn it into lovely compost for the garden.  Wiltshire Council offer them a discounted price here. If you don’t have space for a composter, how about a wormery for your veg scraps?

Love Food Hate Waste have more great tips and ideas and we love this Christmas message from the Hubbub Food Waste Fairy

Thank you for reducing waste this Christmas!

If these tips have inspired you to reduce your food waste in 2019, how about joining our Waste Free Feb challenge? We’re planning a bigger, bolder campaign and we’d love you to join us. See here for more details about the challenge.