‘Amount of discarded food is still often underestimated’

‘Amount of discarded food is still often underestimated’

Photo: CookLoveShare

Despite the many government initiatives to food waste, throwing consumers still lot of food away that is still very reasonably priced.

“People know the numbers and the problem, but generally think that they themselves are not such a large share,” says Roy van der Ploeg, press officer of the Nutrition centre, in conversation with

On average, lands in the Netherlands annually between 1.7 and 2.6 billion pounds of food in the trash, per person that is about 47 pounds. “An average Dutch household (officially consisting of 2,2 persons) throws annually for about 340 euro to edible food away,” says Van der Ploeg.

Throw away

“A lot of waste is created, for example, because people products that are not kept refrigerated need be, such as, for example, tomatoes, in the fridge to stop and vice versa. Also, many refrigerators warmer than the proper temperature of four degrees set, so that bacteria more rapidly multiply and eat so faster it spoils,” says Van der Ploeg.

In addition, we are too often lead by the offers in the supermarket. “We stare us blind on larger quantities for smaller prizes, but this leads in to the store to impulse buying. The experience shows that this products is often a long lie, because you beforehand and had no plans to buy it.”

That endorses Freke van Nimwegen, one of the founders of the Instock restaurants where mainly cooked with food rescued from waste. “There is often too much bought, in part because people forget the (cool)cabinet to look before they go shopping. Also there is a lot of food is lost because a lot of people the best-before date (best before) are often not well understand, and in a lot of households simply to large amounts of cooked.”

Own contribution

Because increasingly, attention is asked for food waste, also thinks Of a nights sleep that most people are aware of the overall problem. “People are more aware of the problem than, for example, five years ago, but realize not that they are really part of the whole. This will result in an actual change in behaviour, which is of course the most difficult of all, yet quite left behind.”

“More awareness would be created by, for example, two weeks in a diary, where you write down what and how much you per day is thrown away,” says Van der Ploeg.

He also has a number of other simple tips to help consumers with food waste can easily occur. “Beginning with the setting of the fridge temperature to four degrees. Then make use of a boodschappenbriefje if you go to the supermarket. It has been proven that this is a waste, since you’ll be forced to advance in the cupboards to see what there is still in the house and are less tempted by offers. Also, try to make better use of the freezer. You throw often bread away? Keep this standard in the freezer and take out at night what the next day will want to use.”

Other methods to make products for longer shelf life are according to the netherlands Nutrition centre, for example, drying, adding salt or acid, fermentation, smoking, canning, cooking and adding preservatives.

Better environment

There is also Van Nimwegen, who tells Instock under the guise of “conservation you can learn” workshops on the basis of their cookbook Instock Cooking, the agree. “It is actually not so very exciting. For example, try to agree to one day per week to cook with what you have at home. You will see that you get a lot more out of it than you thought possible. One other tip is the ‘forgetting’ of the best before date on the packaging. By looking, smelling and tasting, you will discover that food nine times out of ten is still fine to eat, even though it claims to be the best-before date.”

Van Nimwegen indicates that this is not the case for the TGT date (use to), which is found on highly perishable products. “This is really a voedselveiligheidsdatum. By such products shortly after purchase to freeze, you can the shelf life be extended until after the TGT-to-date,” adds Van der Ploeg.

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