How To Reduce Produce Waste and Save $$$ Doing It

1) Choose the “ugly” apple. Oftentimes the less-happy produce goes bad because we naturally goes for the prettier option. But if it’s just a little quirky without signs of bruising, etc, then why not take home the lumpy squash? You’ll still enjoy all the nutritional benefits and the satisfaction of knowing you saved it from the garbage! At our new beverage bar, ’76 Sips, we do our best to use the quirky-looking produce in our fresh smoothies as one of our many sustainable practices.

2) Shop more, for less. Sure it’s easier to pick up what you need for meals for the next week or even two weeks in just one trip. But this usually means your fresh produce will be anything but fresh by the time you use it. Adjusting your routine to incorporate more regular trips to the store will result in happier fruit & veggies in your home, and less of it going bad. And for those of us who like to be a little more spontaneous, shopping more means you won’t have to plan your meals too far in advance. If you feel like sweet potato soup tonight, you got it.

Spinach leaves

3) Plan a weekly “use it up” meal. Get creative with the leftovers in your fridge…turn your stir fry into soup, roasted veggies into breakfast hash or shred raw veggies & dip into a delicious coleslaw. This way nothing goes to waste and you might even discover a new favourite recipe through your inventions.

4) Preserve it…in water! Does anyone else always have way too much cilantro? You buy a huge bunch and only use a small handful a-top of your soup. Then it sits in the fridge until it’s slimy beyond measure. The solution? Treat your fresh herbs like a flower bouquet. Simply trim the ends of whatever herb you have, remove the plastic band, place in a small mason jar with fresh water (changing the water every other day) and cover loosely with a plastic bag in the fridge. Depending on the herb, you can enjoy it fresh for a week or longer!

5) Store smart. Every fruit and veggie has it’s preferred location for it’s longest life. Potatoes and onions like dark, cool places. But don’t store them together or they begin to magically sprout. Any fruit or veggies that you cut into will live longer if you use a beeswax wrap. We now even carry a new VEGAN wax wrap! Check out our selection in-store.

Avocados, blueberries and oranges

6) Can it / Freeze it / Pickle it / Soup it … the options are truly endless! For example, when you know you won’t get through all your fresh blueberries, you could make your own diy chia jam or freeze it for smoothies or to add to your water bottle for some delicious extra antioxidants. We

7) Clean your home. We were inspired by this article with great ideas to clean your house with fruits and vegetables!

8) Compost. Composting is a win-win because it makes your garden happy while keeping food waste out of the landfills! We’ve learned that chopping your produce waste down helps it decompose faster! Occasional sunshine, water & stirring also helps the process along. Don’t have a garden to use your compost? Check out the City of Peterborough’s Waste Management System to become informed about how to best to dispose of your green waste.

A large dinner with a group of friends

9) Share. If you’ve too many peaches on your hands, invite a few friends over to enjoy them! Or donate extra carrots to your local shelter (if they accept fresh produce). What is your favourite meal to share with others?

Tag us in your produce-saving ideas this month @joannnesplace on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter so that we can share them and inspire others!

We’re all in this together

Jo Anne’s Place

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