A new report conducted by Satsuma Loans has revealed the staggering amount of food wasted by Brits over the festive period.
The report titled ‘Christmas waste’ has questioned 2000 UK respondents on their purchasing behaviour at Christmas, revealing a shockingly large amount of food which is to be sent straight to the bins.
The report revealed that the average UK household will spend an extra £100 on food this December and at least £16 of that will go straight into the bin. This number may appear relatively low but when combined with the rest of the UK it shows the potential value of food waste to be a staggering £444 Million.
The average UK household takes 20 days to plan and prepare their Christmas food shop2, however, 20% of the UK believe that their bad planning will lead to excess food waste.
With 4.4 million metric tons of avoidable food waste in the UK during 2015, it may come as a surprise that the UK is still not reusing perfectly good food, with 7% of the UK saying they will not reuse their leftovers from Christmas dinner to create another meal.
What are the most wasted foods at Christmas?
The top offenders of food waste have been revealed as:
Why do we end up with Christmas waste?
Reducing food waste can be a challenging task, however, to start its always worthwhile checking to see what the main causes are.
20% if the UK believe they buy too much food with another 20% saying that bad planning is the main cause of food waste in their homes.
10% of the UK say dining out is causing food to go out of date in their homes whilst 7% of the UK admit to not reusing food after its initial cook.
Top tips for a more sustainable Christmas:
- Plan Ahead – Figure our serving sizes so that it avoids over shopping which then results in food waste. Another tip is to make a list and stick to it, this stops you from getting tempted by those Christmas specials.
- Compost – All food leftovers that cant be used in another meal can be composted or given to local animals to reduce any potential waste.
- Local, Organic and Free-Range – Choose organic, free range and local produce from vegetables to meat this will create a sustainable feel-good meal.
- Quality over Quantity – Think about how many guests you have and then cook with that in mind. Whatever the star of the meal is, it doesn’t have to take up the whole dining table, a quality meal will go down much better with your guests and then serve it will delicious sides.
- Clean Green – Clean up after your guests will all natural and no harsh chemical household cleaners. Run your dishwasher with only full loads and don’t keep electrical items running when not in use.
- Recycle – Keep all gift bags, bows and ribbons to reuse next year, all food packaging make sure you wash thoroughly and recycle, all wrapping paper that is non-glossy can be shredded for compost or added to your recycling bin
- Food storage – store your food correctly so that it lasts longer for example potatoes should be stored in a well-ventilated container and stored in a dry location away from sunlight and freeze items that you feel may not get used.