Make a meal of leftoversEthical Food & Drink News & Features
This article first appeared in our spring ’18 issue of MyGreenPod Magazine, The Conscious Revolution, distributed with the Guardian on 04 May 2018. Click here to subscribe to our digital edition and get each issue delivered straight to your inbox
With obesity in the UK rising, and 8.4 million people struggling to afford to eat, our food system needs to change. In England 63% of adults are categorised as overweight or obese; while the rate of increase has slowed, the trend is still upwards.
28% of children aged two to 15 in the UK are overweight or obese, yet at the same time there are people who go through the day without a proper meal.
Research by FareShare, which fights hunger by tackling food waste in the UK, shows 46% of those accessing the services of its charity partners have gone a whole day without a proper meal in the last month.
Taking a more conscious approach to food is a great step towards tackling this maddening inequality. This starts with reducing our food waste and making sure our portions are appropriate when food is plentiful.
Some of the highly processed foods we consume pack more calories and fewer nutrients than simpler foods, so cooking at home and eating a varied diet has never been more important. Being mindful of the food we eat – and the food we don’t – could have a huge impact on our environmental resources, the welfare of others and the health of our families.
Yeo Valley and FareShare are working together to help raise public consciousness about the food we consume. Yeo Valley has released its sixth limited edition yoghurt made with leftover fruit that might otherwise have gone to waste, as part of an ongoing commitment to take a thoughtful and sustainable approach to business. The idea is to draw attention to the problem of food waste, and encourage people to get creative instead of discarding food that’s still good to eat.
Left-Yeover organic yoghurt, this time made with apple puree and Spanish quince, went on sale exclusively in 380 Tesco stores across the UK at the end of April. Using up leftovers and making use of a glut of fruit is a simple example of how everyday changes can make a difference to the food that’s wasted in the UK every year.
Left-Yeovers will be on supermarket shelves for around 16 weeks, and 10p from every limited edition pot sold will be donated to FareShare. The Left-Yeovers project has so far raised just over £42,000 for FareShare – enough money to provide 168,050 meals for those in need.
The range has shown that waste-not-want-not really works – and has made great use of delicious fruit, too.
Click here to find out why Yeo Valley semi-skimmed milk is a MyGreenPod Hero
FareShare is a charity that does more than just share out food; it makes food accessible to over 10,000 charities and community groups who support some of the most vulnerable people in society.
FareShare redistributed 13,552 tonnes of food in the last year alone. Volunteers are the lifeblood of FareShare’s work; if you want to become a food hero and play a big part in the fight against hunger and food waste, join the team.
How to use leftovers
Plan your weekly food shop so you don’t over-buy food. When you’re planning, try to make sure you’re factoring in what you will need to eat first, like salad leaves, and the best way to use up ingredients like crème fraîche or fresh herbs.
BUY WONKY VEG
Yeo Valley included ‘ugly apples’ in a previous Left-Yeovers flavour, and supermarkets are now doing their bit to reduce waste by loosening their ‘size and shape’ rules.
DON’T HOARD FOOD
Freezers have long been the food waste pioneer’s best friend, but we’re all guilty of over-stocking the freezer and throwing away mysterious frozen food. Use up this stockpile by having ‘freezer Friday’. If you’re really not going to use some of your unopened long-life goods, then a food bank will always be happy to give them a good home!