Reduce

An illustration showing Zero Waste within dialogue boxes on an orange background with Reduce written underneath.

Learn some handy tips to reduce your household's food waste.

Did you know every year the average family in New Zealand throws away $644 of food that could have been eaten?

When food waste ends up in the landfill with the rest of our rubbish, it doesn't get composted as the conditions are not right for this to happen. Waste in the landfill is tightly compacted stopping the oxygen needed for composting reaching the buried rubbish. This means it releases methane, a harmful greenhouse gas.

We are proud to be part of the national Love Food Hate Waste New Zealand campaign which aims to help household reduce their food waste through simple everyday tips and tricks. 

Love Food Hate Waste website

An infographic showing top 10 foods that are thrown away in New Zealand.

Plan ahead

  • Plan your meals for the week ahead. Contact our Waste Minimisation Officer to get your hands on a magnetic meal planner.

Contact us

  • Make shopping lists based on your meal plans and stick to them
  • Check cupboards and fridge before writing your shopping list
  • Batch cook and freeze portions for a quick mid-week meal

Be smart

  • Know your portion sizes

An inographic about food portions using hands to show portion size.

  • Store food correctly to make it last longer. If you wrap your veggies in a damp tea towel it will keep them fresher and crisper for much longer. The Love Food Hate Waste website has more storage tips and tricks.

Storage tips

  • Know what food labels mean. Best Before and Use By mean different things. Use By dates refer to food safety so you should not eat foods after this date. This date is usually found on meats, seafood and infant formula. Best Before dates refer to quality so food is usually safe to eat after this date but it might not be at its best. Use your common sense, it if looks, smells and tastes okay, then you can probably eat it. 

An inforgraphic about understanding expiry dates to cut food waste.

  • Make the most of your fridge by keeping the temperature between 1°C and 4°C.
  • Have an “Eat me first” shelf for foods with short shelf lives or leftovers that should be eaten up soon.  

An infographic showing how to use fridge to cut your food waste.

  • Use your freezer as a “pause button” to preserve your food until you need it. Did you know all these items can be frozen?

An infographic showing how to use freezer to cut your food waste.

Be flexible

  • Use leftovers for lunches or quick meals during the week. Remember the 2:2:2 rule for leftovers – you have 2 hours to get it into the fridge, 2 days to eat it, and it will last for 2 months in the freezer.
  • Be creative with what you may consider waste e.g. potato peelings can be baked into crisps. 

Leftover recipe ideas - Love Food Hate Waste website