Need Ways to Stop Wasting Fresh Veggies?
Crunch! Crunch! Crunch! The sounds fill the barn. I just got done feeding half a bunch of slimy cilantro, lettuce and parsley to some of our rabbits. These were the leftovers or forgotten pieces from what I bought at the grocery store. I try to limit the food I waste, but instead, the rabbits are feasting more on the extra veggies from my refrigerator drawers. So, what can us busy moms do to get the most from the food we buy?
Personally, I’m attempting to serve my family fresher fruits and veggies. Like many families, we make a conscious decision to eat better by choosing fresh over processed foods. My dilemma is using everything I buy because I can’t stand throwing food out, and we just can’t eat everything fast enough.
I learned to use the phrase, “less is more.” Here are a few ideas that help me implement it:
- Shop more frequently (twice a week instead of once)
- Buy smaller amounts
- Have a plan for what you buy (a recipe or a meal in which to use the fresh ingredients)
- Clean fresh items and put them in proper storage containers the same day they are bought
- Keep fresh items easily accessible to family members
It’s also important to “stick to the list,” and don’t be tempted to pick up extras! When I’m shopping, I take a few minutes beforehand to check my chosen recipes and meal plans so I purchase the specific items and quantities I need. It’s not a bargain to buy three cucumbers for 1 dollar if I only plan to eat two. If the other one spoils before I figure out what to do with it, then what have I saved?
When I get home with my fresh picks, I make a point to clean, cut and place them where they can be grabbed by family members scavenging for a snack or something to throw in their lunches. The proper storage container will also help. One of my favorite go to storage containers is aluminum foil. Believe it or not, it works great to keep your items fresh, crisp and tasty for a longer time.
This busy mom wants her kids to learn valuable life-long eating habits. Eating fresh fruits and veggies without producing a lot of waste is one way I try to accomplish that. I hope these tips will help you limit the amount of wasted veggies, too, so you’re not feeding them to your animals!
Tonya Weiss is a working mom of 3 teenage kids and married to the man who keeps them all going the same direction. They live in the country raising rabbits, chickens, goats, and a garden. Their time is full of sports, school, church, 4-H, and other community organizations that allow them to make life-long family memories.