Why food waste is a problem for all of us


General, Let's Talk / Thursday, July 18th, 2019

Food waste problem

Everyone needs food to survive. It fuels us and keeps us full of energy for the day. We need food to survive but only need just enough to live. An abundance of food choices lead food waste from the majority of super-markets, restaurants and customers as there is too much to eat. We all contribute to food waste in some way but why exactly is this an issue? Well, today we will be looking into food waste, followed by an interview with a company that has an experience in dealing with food waste in a positive and profitable way.

Why food waste is a problem?

Last year around £26 billion worth of food was thrown out by household and businesses. We waste a huge amount of food each day, which as a result damages the environment in many different ways. The damages to the environment include adding to global warming due to chemicals food give out in landfill. You can check out all the current statistics on the Open Access Government website by following the link here. Otherwise, let’s go through some of the damaging factors of food waste.

Environment impact

One reason why food waste must be reduced, is the effect it has on the environment. Food has its own carbon footprints so when it is thrown away it contributes to greenhouse gases. There are many reasons for this, throwing out gone off food, food that looks funny and having too much food leading to you having to throw some of it away.

Precious water

With any food, it will go through a process to ensure it is safe for consumption. This process required lots of water to complete so when food is wasted so is water. Due to water being essential for life, wasting it is not preferred especially when food is being wasted as well.

Wasting money

Alternatively, wasting food is wasting money. Billions of pounds worth of food is wasted per year due to food waste, so you are losing out on money which you could spend, invest or save elsewhere.

World hunger

Around the world there are plenty of people struggling for food. A lot of food is wasted instead of giving it to somebody in need. If we didn’t waste food and made better use of it, more people would be fed.

Rubies in the Rubble – helping in the battle against food waste

Taking a stance on food waste

One brand taking a stance on food waste is rubies. Rubies is a company that creates unique condiments made from food that would otherwise to waste. Their mission is to make the most of the tonnes of food waste in and around the United Kingdom through the sale of their products. They do this by purchasing food that get disapproved by supermarkets and uses that to create the refreshing range of condiments they offer.

Currently, they are seeking investment and support to help them reach this goal alongside becoming a mainstream brand and compete against the likes of Heinz and Hellman’s condiments. If you want to help Rubies out, you can do so by following the link to the Rubies Seedrs page here.

Rubies in the Rubble Interview

To better understand food waste, I got in contact with Rubies in the Rubble. After around a day, they were able to get back to me and were able to answer all my questions. I asked about the company and how we could better combat food waste ourselves. The questions to the interview as are follows.

  • Q1: What is your opinion on food waste?
  • Q2: What would you recommend people do to cut down on their own food waste?
  • Q3: What made you create all these exotic flavours?

Below are the answers to the interview questions. Before reading, please make sure to check out their website at: https://rubiesintherubble.com/

Q1: “What is your opinion on food waste?”

Rubies: “Currently, 1/3 of all food produced is wasted. Often simply because of shape, size or colour. Or just because of imbalances in the supply chain. This uneaten food represents 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Add to that the fact that up to 40% of crops never reaches the shelves, we have on our hands a food waste epidemic, and a real need to reframe our attitude to food and start viewing it as a precious resource. It’s part of the reason we’re called Rubies In The Rubble; we extend the life span of fruit and veg like tomatoes, bananas, onions and pears by using natural preservatives (sugars and vinegars), which result in great tasting, flavour packed condiments.

Currently, for every 100kg of product we sell, we save 9499 tomatoes, 2171 onions, 1111 apples, and hundreds of bananas and pears and cucumbers from going to waste. We’re out to prove that a sustainable business is a successful business, and drive not just change within the food industry, but public attitudes to food too.”

Q2: “What would you recommend people do to cut down on their own food waste?”

Rubies: “At Rubies we aren’t aiming to tell people how they should be behaving, nor expecting people to be great waste savers. We just aim to help provide real life alternatives to the fast-paced businesses that people are used to, alternatives which can be beneficial to both society and the planet. With Rubies in the Rubble we aim to fight food waste whilst also making an effort to highlight the issue, so people are more aware of where their food comes from and think about all of the resources that go into that.

Personally, that would be my greatest suggestion when it comes to cutting your waste, to think not only of it as food but of the energy, water and people throughout the chain which have contributed to making the product in front of you. This doesn’t mean carrying out some great lifestyle change but merely making small changes to how you go about your life and use products and resources.”

Q3: “What made you create all these exotic flavors?”

Rubies: “Our chutney recipes are all family recipes from Jenny’s childhood growing up on a sustainable farm in Scotland. Rubies came about as Jenny’s experience doing this led to her realising she could make a difference to increase the longevity of these surplus fruit and vegetables! However, as the innovative waste savers we believe ourselves to be, we do aim to make some pretty wild recipes depending on the surplus fruit and veg available.

We previously had a bbq sauce available made from surplus blueberries, which tasted pretty much like the real thing. And, regarding our banana ketchup we developed the recipe as we discovered £80 million of bananas were discarded due to a mark or bruise, so found our own way to save the discarded!”

Interview Summary

Hopefully by reading the questions, you have a better understanding on the food waste problem. What are your thoughts on food waste, tell us down the comments! And again, please don’t forget to go check out Rubies in the Rubble via: https://rubiesintherubble.com/

However, if you prefer to engage with them on social media too. All the icons can be found below, which all link to their pages individually:

Instagram

Instagram social media icon (click to go to page).

Twitter

Twitter social media icon (click to go to page).

Facebook

Facebook social media icon (click to go to page).

Stopping food waste

After the interview, I realised plenty of ways I could help in the fight against food waste myself. Through hours of research and going over the interviews, I came up with a few important tips when considering how you could reduce your own food waste at home or when out and about.

Organise your shopping

Everything starts from good organisation and planning. Start by creating a list of what you will buy before you go, this way you will avoid buying more than you can chew as food. There are plenty of apps that help you create a shopping list or plan what you will do. Speaking of organising yourself for shopping, you should check out our review of Padoq – an excellent app for organising, you can find the review by clicking here.

Stop! Don’t throw food away every time…

Throwing out food because it looks funny? Stooop! If the food has not gone rotten, extremely mouldy or way beyond the use by date, make use of it.

Freeze it!

Speaking of freezing fruit for ice cream, why not freeze the food to make it last even longer in the first place. My recommendations are if you can get away with putting it in the freezer, then do so. It also means that you can save it for later or for the day when you fancy it. Additionally, by utilising your freezer, you can freeze most of the food you have if you have too much food to get through, meaning nothing will become food waste.

Make use of it elsewhere

If you have fruits and vegetables, throw it into a blender and make a smoothie, some soup and even freeze the fruit to make tasty ice cream. Bread that’s gone a bit stale, you can follow these hacks to get your bread looking delicious again by clicking here.

Compost it

Don’t fancy having a mushy banana smoothie? Well, you can always compost it. Using a compost is a great way to make use of food that would otherwise go to waste. Compost has many uses like helping plants grow and if you don’t grow your own plants, helping others out by providing them with compost.

Compost for money

If helping others out for free isn’t your preference, you could also sell it to people for a low affordable price, which would help you make a small profit. Food waste does waste money too, so it would be a great way to make some money back selling your homemade compost.

Prefer not to eat it?

In addition to composting it, you can also offer it to someone like a family member, friend or neighbour. Other people may be able to make good use of it and who knows it could be delicious!

Stay topped up

Water is a the perfect drink to keep you hydrated, so why not drink more of it to reduce food waste. Unfortunately, when people are dehydrated, we end up eating more food due to our body needing water. While eating food is fine, eating too much of it isn’t. Each piece of food you eat has a carbon footprint, so by feeling less need to eat by staying hydrated can help you combat it.

However, if you do feel your water is tasteless, you can always throw in some fruit into the drink. I typically love to throw in mint and limes into my water as a preferred choice. What is also good is that once you have finished with them you can add into a smoothie of dish at home.

Reducing food waste

If you have considered all the above options, you should now be able to fight good waste. Small things, such as planning, composting, freezing and making the most of your food can help.

If you want to check out Rubies, their products and maybe give them a try, click here. Eventually, I will be releasing a review for Rubies in the future. If you want to know when that is release, all you need to do is subscribe to the blog. To find the subscription button, it is located on sidebar or at the bottom of your page on your smartphone.

Enjoyed the tips in this post? Why not check out some food waste tips by following this blog post here. They have some very simplistic tips that are easy to follow.

In addition, please check out some of my other tips and tricks posts here. I have plenty of tips and tricks in the works and many coming soon!

Thank you for reading today’s post. If you enjoyed today’s post, you check out some of our other experiences on the Dynamic Double blog. I try to post the latest experiences, updates and more on the blog regularly. As always, I really appreciate the support and will hopefully be posting again soon.