(BPT) - Just on the horizon is this year’s World Food Day (October 16), which provides us with the perfect opportunity to commit to a more sustainable lifestyle while making a stand against the unnecessary food production and consumption that continues to harm our planet.
Keeping in mind that our actions are our future, we can all do our bit for the cause with a little effort. You’re just a few lifestyle changes away from adopting more mindful, waste-free eating and cooking choices that help bring a future where food waste is no longer an issue. Here are 4 simple tips to help you get started.
1. Cook More Meals at Home.
Unlike dining out or ordering in, cooking at home gives you the power to prepare the perfect portion sizes for you and your family — which means less leftovers. One great way to reduce waste is to only cook the food you have at home, because when armed with the right recipes, you’ll find putting together a scrumptious meal from random ingredients easier and more satisfying than scrambling to the store for yet another grocery trip.
Other than leftovers, food waste is so often caused by a blunder in the kitchen — for instance, taking your eyes off the oven for just a minute too long and then discovering that your dinner is utterly ruined. To foolproof your culinary endeavors with your oven, the LG ThinQ app’s Scan-to-Cook feature takes care of the oven settings and cooking time for you. Scan the barcode on one of the Scan-to-Cook meals provided by LG’s smart kitchen partners and the recipe will be sent over to your connected range, which will then automatically start cooking for you. The result? A meal so perfectly cooked that you relish every bite, which is made possible thanks to a smart feature that not only guarantees precisely cooked meals, but a streamlined cooking process with less prep time as well.
2. Take Stock of Your Food Items.
When it comes to grocery shopping, buying only as much as you need is key to reducing waste. Take stock of the groceries stored in your fridge and pantry to get a clear idea of which food items you still need to use and which need to be topped up. This helps keep you from excessive buying — and it goes without saying that less buying equals less waste.
Once you’re aware of every ingredient you’ve got in stock, make sure to use them before they spoil — because some will expire before you know it. To keep tabs on all your perishable items, try setting expiration date alerts for your smart fridge on the LG ThinQ app. You’ll have notifications sent straight to your phone so that you can sleep easy knowing that your favorite meal will be on the dinner table before it’s too late.
3. Buy Ingredients from the Local Farmers Market ... or Grow Your Own.
Whether you live in the city or countryside, there’s always a local famers market selling the freshest ingredients — so buy local! Because these markets deliver food straight from a farm to your table, not only is the farmer getting a great deal, but the stuff you buy is fresher and more flavorful than anything you can get from the supermarket. And the fresher the produce is, the longer it’ll last and the less likely you’ll have to throw anything away because of spoilage.
But if you’re looking for a more hands-on experience, you could always opt to grow your own produce by dedicating a small plot of land in your back garden to growing veggies and fruit. By doing so, you’ll minimize the environmental impact of mass-scale food production. Having a garden close by also means you can turn inedible food into compost that’ll help your self-produced groceries grow better thanks to healthier soil, and you might even discover a new hobby in the process. Plus, you can bring your garden indoors for the upcoming colder seasons with the help of LG’s smart air conditioners, which let you set the optimal home temperature for your plants right from the phone.
4. Go the Extra Eco-Mile in the Kitchen.
Reducing your carbon footprint in the kitchen is a big step towards a sustainable future, since cooking appliances are responsible for most of your home energy consumption. An easy way to optimize your use of energy as you cook is to use kitchen appliances with higher energy efficiency. So when shopping for appliances, be sure to check the device’s energy-guide label to see how much energy it consumes on a yearly basis so you can make the best decision.
You could also buy smart appliances from eco-conscious providers like LG ThinQ, because they provide ‘eco’ or ‘energy-saving’ settings that help you minimize energy consumption without sacrificing the device’s performance. And by effortlessly connecting such an appliance to a smart-home app with energy-saving features — such as the LG ThinQ app — you can keep your carbon footprint in check with minimal effort.
With these easy-to-follow tips, we can all adopt a more mindful way of eating and preparing our food to help pave the way for a sustainable future.