Easy ways to be less wasteful in the kitchen
It makes sense to reduce your kitchen waste as it saves money and is better for the environment. This article will discuss some easy ways that you can be less wasteful in your kitchen, and ways you can lower your carbon footprint using eco-friendly alternatives.
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Just by swapping to eco-friendly products you can effectively reduce kitchen waste. Look for items made from the following materials:
- Organic Cotton
- Recycled Glass
- Bioplastic compostable products made from Sugar cane, corn or potato starch
- Wood especially teak, or recycled wood
- Stainless steel or aluminium
- Recycled rubber
- Recycled paper
- Coconut husks/fibre
- Linen made from flax
- Soybean fabric
- Recycled Polyester Plastic (PET)
- Wool felt, or reclaimed wool
For further information, read this article from Household Wonders.
Reduce Your Kitchen Waste – Only buy what you need
I discussed this in my article How to Eat a Healthy Diet On a Budget. By only buying what you need, you can reduce food waste. Use a list when you shop, only bulk buy if you know you will consume it by the expiry date, and shop at wholefood stores where you can buy ingredients by weight. Avoid products with a lot of packaging, for example fruit or vegetables with plastic wrapping and trays. I cringe every time I see the unnecessary packaging in supermarkets. Buying from markets can be far better for the environment and the produce will be much fresher.
Compost your food waste
You can reduce your carbon footprint by composting your food waste at home. Home composting saves your waste ending up in landfill. Landfills are responsible for much of the methane gas, a byproduct of composting organic material. Landfill gas, a combination of methane and carbon dioxide, is responsible for much of the greenhouse gas emissions.
Food scraps can be composted and used to fertilise your garden and pot plants.For further information about home composting, read my Complete Guide to Composting and Worm Farms.
Use alternatives to plastic bags and food wraps in the kitchen
By swapping plastic with eco-friendly alternatives you will drastically reduce the amount of waste going to landfill. Choose compostable bags and food wraps, silicone lids for containers, beeswax wraps, muslin bags, and storage containers made from glass or stainless steel.
I have a set of silicone lids which are a great way to avoid using plastic wrap. They come in different sizes and can stretch over bowls or to save cut fruit. They may be hand washed or put in the top rack of the dishwasher. My set has lasted at least two years.
Reusing and re-purposing plastic
A common question among people trying to reduce kitchen waste is: should I throw out all my plastic bags and containers? The answer is, absolutely not! That will only add to the landfill. Instead, try to reuse them as much as possible before you discard them. Re-purpose them elsewhere.
Plastic containers could be used for storage. Even ones that have lost their lids could be used as dividers in your sock drawer or bathroom. Reuse plastic until it’s completely unsuitable for further use, and only buy sustainable products from now on.
Use stainless steel, silicone or ceramic alternatives to disposable or plastic
Reusable items include drinking straws, coffee mugs, drink containers with lids, coffee pods and lunch boxes. You will save money as well as reduce plastic use.
Swap paper towel and cleaning implements to eco-friendly alternatives
I love the fact that there are now reusable alternatives to so many products. Everything from cotton or cellulose dishcloths to coconut pot scrubbers are now available. Look for products made from sustainable materials, including the packaging they come in. The bonus is that they look great, especially the bamboo ones.
As someone who has multiple allergies and very sensitive skin, it is vital for me to avoid strong chemicals. Eco-friendly cleaning products made from natural ingredients are better for the environment and less allergenic to my skin. Look for pure Castile soap products.
Where to find stockists of eco-friendly goods
We are lucky to be able to purchase a huge range of eco-friendly products in Australia. Our supermarkets and department stores have increased their range over the years and there are specialty stores as well. You can find a lot of eco-friendly products online. The Well Store sells not only environmentally friendly homeware, but also food and health supplements.
Because of my allergies I am always on the search for products that are hypo-allergenic and made ethically from natural ingredients. The Well Store has an extensive range for personal and home use. I recommend this company to anyone trying to reduce waste in their kitchen, and lower their carbon footprint.
Reduce your kitchen waste
To sum up, reducing waste in your kitchen is as easy as swapping plastic and disposable products with reusable or compostable products. You will not only reduce your carbon footprint, ultimately you will save money. You may purchase many of the products from supermarkets or specialty stores such as The Well Store.
Can you suggest other ways to reduce your kitchen waste? I’d love to hear what ways you are environmentally friendly at home. Leave a comment below.