10 ways to reduce food waste at home

Want to do your part to improve your carbon footprint and help the planet? Here's how.


By Lowcountry Food Bank


Eliminating global food waste would save 4.4 million tons of C02 a year, the equivalent of taking one in four cars off the road.


Each year,Feeding Americaand its network of food banks, of whichLowcountry Food Bankis a member, rescues around 3.6 billion pounds of food. This represents only a small percentage of food that could have been donated but ended up in a landfill. In the United States, food waste is estimated at between 30 to 40 percent of the food supply, according to theUnited States Department of Agriculture.


According to theU.S. Environmental Protection Agency,food is the single largest category of material placed in municipal landfills in the United States, where it emits methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. Municipal solid waste landfills are the third-largest source of human-related methane emissions in the U.S., accounting for approximately 14.1 percent of these emissions in 2017. 


All the world’s nearly one billion hungry people could be fed on less than a quarter of the food that is wasted in the US, UK and Europe. Eliminating global food waste would save 4.4 million tons of C02 a year, the equivalent of taking one in four cars off the road. 


Here are 10 ways people can reduce food waste at home: 


  1. Before shopping, make a shopping list and stick to it. 

  2. Buy only what you can eat before the food spoils. 

  3. Buy from local farmers. Food is fresher and they consume less resources to bring the food to the market. 

  4. In your refrigerator, bring older items to the front so you can consume them first. 

  5. Store fruits and vegetables properly to extend their shelf life. 

  6. Cut up leftover carrots, herbs, onions, and other vegetables and freeze them. You can use them in recipes or to make a vegetable stock. 

  7. Date the food in your freezer so you’ll easily see when they’re nearing the end of their shelf life. 

  8. Donate unused food to a local pantry or food kitchen. You can feed a lot of hungry people this way. 

  9. When eating out, bring home leftover food and eat it! 

  10. Try Composting! 


To learn more about Lowcountry Food Bank, visit our website atlowcountryfoodbank.org.


Lowcountry Food Bank donate