Food is the universal language that brings people together during the holidays no matter what you celebrate. But did you know that Americans waste 108 billion pounds of every year in just food? Much of that comes from holiday eats – turkey, cranberries, produce, etc. Everyone at NextGen would like to encourage you to think consciously about food waste and how to mindfully reduce loss where you can as we head into the holidays.
It all starts with planning effectively. How many people are you feeding? How many casseroles do you need at that holiday dinner? Try not to over compensate. Trust us, we know that this is hard but pay attention to the head count on a recipe and factor in all the other dishes you will have. After the food has been cooked and bellies turn full, take the leftovers and repurpose them. Make a pot pie with leftover meats and veggies or freeze them for later. Take a plate of food to the neighbor who might live alone (or invite them to your table this year!).
And when it comes to storing food, how about beeswax wraps (we love this brand!) instead of plastic wrap or glass containers instead of plastic?
Staying true to our theme of sustainability we’d like to invite you to explore local food options to ring in your holiday celebrations because after all, supporting people in your community also supports sustainability. No matter if you’re hosting Sukkot or Thanksgiving, let local food sources help with your buying this month. Purchase your meat from a nearby rancher or look to indoor farmer’s markets as the weather turns cold.
We love Imperfect Foods, a grocery delivery service that specializes in foods that may not get chosen at the grocery store because of a blemish or imperfection.
There are a variety of ways we can practice, incorporate and instill sustainability in our holidays. Food waste is a huge problem not only in the U.S. but worldwide and there are several different areas you can turn your focus to help the crisis. Head over to our Essential Ingredients podcast with Reilly Brock explains how the source their produce from local farmers.
How will you get creative with your leftovers this year? Tag us on Instagram @nextgenpurpose_ and inspire us.
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