In the UK, we currently throw away a staggering 10.2 million tonnes of food a year, with an equivalent to a financial value of over £20 billion. Staggeringly, in terms of global food waste, if food loss and waste were a country and had a carbon footprint of its own, it would be the 3rd largest emitter of greenhouse gas in the world – just behind the US!
What’s the problem?
The majority of food wasted in the UK is thrown away from our own homes. In fact citizen food waste in Britain currently stands at a massive 7.1 million tonnes per year.
The bad news is that this level of waste significantly impacts the environment. The UK’s food waste alone is associated with more than 25 million tonnes of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
To get to grips with the problem and hopefully bring those figures down, a new Love Food Hate Waste campaign has been launched to encourage the nation to reduce the amount of food that gets wasted.
It’s called compleat-ing – eating more of the food we buy, and throwing away much less.
What is compleat-ing?
The philosophy of compleating is all about embracing the perfectly edible parts of certain foods (such as potatoes and bread) which commonly go to waste. This could be because people don’t want to eat them, don’t know how to prepare them, or in some cases don’t even realise they are edible.
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Broccoli. Our fave super veg. But don't just chop off the florets and be done with it. Those stems have benefits. You can dice 'em up and add to stir fries or curries – and the stems blitzed up in a warming veggie soup makes for more goodness, less waste. ————————————- Broccoli. Ein hoff lysieuyn gwyrdd. Ond peidiwch â thorri’r pennau a thaflu’r coesyn. Mae rhan hwnnw’n ddefnyddiol hefyd. Gallwch dorri’r coesynnau a’u hychwanegu at dro ffrio neu gyri. Gallwch hefyd eu blendio mewn cawl llysiau cynhesol; mwy o ddaioni a llai o wastraff. #compleating #lovefoodhatewaste #foodwaste #savetheplanet #lesswaste #foodsavvy #environment #ecofriendly #savemoney #leftovers #foodie #hungry #nom #foodstagram #foodporn #food #instafood #carubwyd #gwastraffbwyd #llwglyd #bwydiach #dysgwyr #blasus #bwyd #yagym #pethaubychain #dysgucymraeg
If more people ate things like potato skins and peels, bread ends and pizza crusts, broccoli and cauliflower stalks, this would greatly help to reduce UK food waste, and in turn, benefit our environment.
But there are other benefits too…
- Save money: Compleating means you get the best value from the food you buy.
- Improve nutrition: Eating every part of your ingredient/meal means you make the most of the nutrients in your food.
- Save time: Peeling vegetables like potatoes, carrots and parsnips is an unnecessary hassle. Save time by not peeling them, and do something else you enjoy instead!
- Help protect the environment: It takes a huge amount of resources – land, water, time, hard work – to bring food to your plate. All of this goes to waste when we don’t eat all of the edible parts of our food.
How can you get involved?
Start eating more of your food! It’s not hard to start compleating today. Try using up the bread crust you might have thrown out to make breadcrumbs, chopping up that broccoli stalk and adding it to a stir fry, or dunking your pizza crusts into a vat of black garlic ketchup (or any other condiment you fancy!). You can find plenty more ideas of how to eat more of your food at www.lovefoodhatewaste.com/compleating.
Over the next few weeks I’m also going to be sharing a few compleat recipes which use up every part of the ingredients involved, but I’d love to hear your own ideas and top tips. Comment below or tweet me your compleating ideas (@hungrycityhippy)and I’ll compile a crowd-sourced blog post for everyone to take inspiration from for the rest of the year 🙂