Reducing carbon footprint also means taking a look at my food choices. I’m not a vegetarian and I’m not sure if I’m ready to make that level of commitment yet. But I’m gradually weaning myself off too much meat. I prefer taking a slow and steady approach on this. I have a better chance of making this work for me if I don’t feel like being rushed through the process. Here are some things I find helpful as I take on this challenge:
Buying only what’s needed
I find planning meals quite helpful in minimizing food waste. It also made it easier for me to buy only what I need when at the supermarket. With a shopping list in hand, I’m able to avoid buying unnecessary items that often end up in the trash.
Committing to a meat-free day
For someone who loves meat, committing to one meat-free day every week is a big step. It was a huge challenge for me in the beginning. It was quite tempting to cheat when the craving starts. But it got easier in the long run. I could even do this twice a week now. I’m still not prepared to take that leap towards a vegetarian lifestyle. But I’m working on eating less meat now.
I used to throw items that have reached their use-by dates. But I’ve learned that some foods are still safe to eat even after past the indicated date. I’ve also learned that the best way to avoid letting a lot of food go to waste is to check their use-by dates before I buy them. As for fresh produce, I make sure that I just buy the right amount I need.
Paying attention to portion sizes when dining out
I’ve inadvertently wasted food when dining out in the past. This was back when I didn’t pay much attention to portion sizes. Now I’ve made it a habit to go for the smaller portions. Or simply ordering whatever’s on the menu that I know I can finish on my own.
Taking out what’s left
One simple way to avoid wasting food when eating out is to bring home what’s left. I’ve been doing this more lately. This is one of the things that may not seem like much in the greater scheme of things. But I like the thought that I’ve reduced my foodprint even just a little by doing it.