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Reducing food waste: plan ahead

Fact of the day: did you know that each year, us Brits throw away roughly 10 million tonnes of food? Luckily, there are lots of small changes we can make around the house to reduce waste and make a difference.

From using up leftovers to planning meal portions, here are seven ways we can help save the planet, one cupboard at a time. 

1. Ocado Receipts

All our receipts are arranged by expiry date, so you can see which foods need to be eaten first – it makes meal-planning a real cinch.

2. Sort your store cupboard

When it comes to filling your fridge, make sure the oldest food is at the front, and the freshest food is at the back – that way, you’ll know which foods need to be eaten first.  Make sure you also check the contents of your cupboards regularly – it’s easy to forget what’s lurking at the back, and this will stop you from buying food you already have. Head over to Love Food Hate Waste for tips on how to store your food properly.

3. Label your food

Expiration dates on food can be easy to miss: that’s where labelling comes in handy. You can use a sharpie pen to write the expiry date directly onto your food packaging. Or, if you’re really organised, you can use white sticky labels instead – perfect for jars and containers.

4. Chill out

Want to keep your chilled food fresher for longer? Simple – just set your fridge temperature to 5°C. Remember, if your fridge is too warm, your food will go off quicker (and won’t smell too great, either).  

5. Plan your meals

It doesn’t have to be a chore, honest! In fact, planning your family meals ahead will not only save you time and money, it will also make the weekly shop even easier. Why not print out a meal planner and stick it to your fridge, to let the kids know what’s on the menu? Need inspiration? Head over to the Food section of our blog to find lots of quick and tasty midweek recipes.

6. Plan your portions

It’s tempting to throw an extra cup of pasta into the pan, but will it get eaten or go to waste? Check your food packaging for the recommended portion size per person. Still not sure how much is too much? Love Food Hate Waste’s Portion Planner will tell you the perfect portion size for all types of food – from meat to veg.

7. Lovely leftovers

Got leftovers from last night but not sure what to do with them? Whatever you do, don’t throw them away! You could be missing out on a delicious next-day snack or even dinner. Add leftover pasta to salads and soups for a satisfying lunch. Or toss leftover rice into a pan with some garlic, chicken and veg, to make a speedy stir-fry for the family. 

Check out more tips on how to turn last night’s leftovers into tasty snacks and meals here.

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