With climate change becoming more prevalent, Biotuff has some top tips to get Australians thinking green in 2023. Improving how we shop and throw-away food will not only help the planet, but it can also reduce the cost of living.
"It's no doubt that the cost of living is affecting many of us," Nadia Steele from Biotuff says. "The savings can be quite staggering for the average Australian home and how much they can save by reducing their waste."
Reports indicate that 51% of Australian homeowners are more likely to be driven to reduce waste to save money, while only 16% are reducing waste for environmental purposes.
"This strongly indicates the busy and stressful times humanity is experiencing. However, any drive to reduce waste is a big bonus for our environment," she says. "Once people are in the habit of reducing waste and collecting kitchen waste for FOGO collection, it will become just as natural as grabbing the reusable shopping bags."
Getting Real About Our Waste
Food Organics and Garden Organics (FOGO) collections are busily being rolled out around the nation, with the forecast that by the end of 2023. The National Waste Policy Action Plan clearly states that all states and territories will introduce FOGO collection services to all households and businesses by the end of this year.
“This is a fantastic step in the right direction. However, it’s not just about how we dispose of our food waste. It’s also important to reduce how much we generate,” Steele says. “It's not just about recycling and utilising biodegradable and compostable products, we all need to collectively reduce the amount of waste we produce."
With many Australian homes throwing copious amounts of food away weekly, the way we shop and dispose of our waste is vital for the future of our planet.
"The cost of living is affecting many of us worldwide, so reducing our waste is not only good for the planet, but it will also help your hip pocket in these stressful times," Steele says.
According to Rabobank 2021 Food Waste Report, Australian families throw away around 11% of their weekly food, or $1,038 worth of food, every year. Or around six average trips to the supermarket each year. Other reports suggest this figure could be much higher. With a whopping saving for the average Australian family being between $2,200 and $3,800 per year.
With the cost of living at an all-time high, Australians can save some serious money with a bit of consideration for their waste.
"Vegetables, fruit, herbs, and bread are the most likely to end up in the bin," Steele says. "These are all compostable produce, but more importantly, if we change how we realistically shop and store our food, we can prevent this waste. Helping the planet and our weekly budgets."
Top Tips for Reducing Waste
• Make a weekly meal plan and stick to it.
• Make a shopping list and only buy what you need for that week.
• Analyse how much food you are throwing away and reduce the amounts of those meals.
• Understand the difference between 'best before' and 'use-by dates.'
• Always check the used-by dates on products before purchase.
• Take note of what foods you are throwing out, and reduce the purchase of these.
• Consider freezing bread products and using them when needed.
• Grow your own herbs.
• Get creative with your leftovers.
• Invest in good quality biodegradable and compostable products.
• Start home composting for your kitchen waste.
• Contact the local council for a timeline on your FOGO collection.
"The great thing about collecting your kitchen waste is that you get a good picture of how much food you are wasting week-on-week – and the results can be quite shocking," Steele says. "We are all guilty of wasting food, and with some simple steps, Australians can reduce the amount of food waste they generate and make huge savings along the way. A big bonus for our budgets and the environment."