Reducing food waste can also help to conserve natural resources such as water and energy that are used in food production. It can also help to reduce food insecurity by making more food available to those in need.
Preventing food waste is essential for a sustainable food system. Proper storage is one of the most effective ways to prevent food from spoiling and going to waste.
By following these simple tips, we can all do our part to reduce food waste and make a positive impact on the environment and society.
Many staple pantry items, such as flour, sugar, and rice, have a longer shelf life if stored properly. However, improper storage can lead to spoilage and contamination. Here are some tips for storing pantry items:
Keep them dry: To keep pantry items dry, store them in a cool, dry place, away from sources of heat and humidity. A pantry or cupboard is a suitable location, but the items should be kept in airtight containers to prevent moisture from seeping in.
Protect from pests: Pantry items are often targeted by pests such as weevils, ants, and mice. To protect these items from pests, store them in airtight containers and regularly clean the storage area to prevent the buildup of food debris.
Rotate stock: Pantry items should be used on a first-in, first-out (FIFO) basis to ensure that the oldest items are used first. This helps to prevent spoilage and ensures that pantry items are used before their expiration date.
Store bread at room temperature in a paper or cloth bag for up to 5 days. For longer storage, freeze the bread in airtight containers for up to 3 months.
Store nuts and seeds in airtight containers in a cool, dry place away from sunlight for up to 3 months. For longer storage, freeze the nuts and seeds in airtight containers for up to 6 months.
Canned goods are a convenient and long-lasting food storage option, but improper storage can lead to spoilage and contamination. Here are some tips for storing canned goods:
Store in a cool, dry place: Canned goods should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Temperatures above 90°F (32°C) can cause canned goods to spoil more quickly.
Check for dents and bulges: Cans with dents or bulges can indicate the growth of harmful bacteria and should be discarded immediately.
Rotate stock: Like pantry items, canned goods should be used on a FIFO basis to ensure that the oldest items are used first.
Storing your non-perishable foods correctly is just the first step to reducing food waste in your household. Learn how to organize your perishable items here!
Learn more about living sustainably by checking out our blogs or check out these 5 tips for organizing your refrigerator and pantry to reduce food waste!