Welcome back to Siempre Eco.’s Sustainable Saturday!
If you’ve been following these blogs, you could probably tell that this would come eventually. Food consumption and grocery shopping is something we all do daily, weekly, and for well– basically forever!
For something we do so often, not everyone knows about all the waste it conjures up! From plastic to wasted food to greenhouse gas emissions, there’s plenty of ways each of us could improve the way we shop for groceries.
Scroll down to see our favourite tips on being more sustainable while grocery shopping!
Avoid Packaging and BYO Bags
This may sound like an obvious one, but you’d be surprised how many people forget it! Plastic pollution is one of the most serious threats to the health of our Earth. Reducing the amount of plastic you use grocery shopping every week is an amazing way to cut that number down significantly.
Side Note: My local Walmart actually stopped offering plastic bags. It was either you take your items home the way they are or you purchase a reusable bag! Way to go, Walmart!
As a final note, you probably know that plastic isn’t recyclable, but did you know that they clog machinery when people put them in recycling bins? Big yikes. Bring your own bags, people.
Think about it: Food from outside your local area must have been transported somehow. Not matter what vehicle was used, greenhouse gas emissions entered the atmosphere, especially if the distance was far!
Buying local and organic products whenever possible decreases GGE and supports local farmers. Supermarkets can carry locally-grown food and produce, as well as farmers markets! Farmer’s markets especially lack packaging, which if you’re wondering why that is important, refer to number one!
We know that some regions have more markets and available farms than others, but just in general: making an effort to buy local, healthier foods still contribute to the fight against climate change and plastic pollution.
Keep It Seasonal And Fresh!
Just as buying local and organic is important, so is knowing what produce is in season! These foods grown in-season need less transportation, which means few preservatives are needed to keep them fresh on the journey!
If a store needs out of season produce, they'll likely get them from a faraway source. Did you know that long-distance foods may even lose some nutrients during transit?
It’s not hard to look up which crops are in season and change your meal plans around them, so make the effort!
Create A Meal Plan
First off, meal plans are extremely satisfying to make. That on it’s own should be reason enough to make one! Okay, just kidding (mostly).
Meal plans are a great way to schedule and manage food consumption. By making meal plans you know exactly what and how much food you need, saving tons of food waste! It also helps you learn to meal prep ahead of time, if you know what you’re eating and when.
Buy In Bulk
It’s not what you may be thinking. When people say ‘buy in bulk’, there’s often a misconception that it applies to your entire grocery list. Nope! When we say buy in bulk, the biggest example to represent what we mean is seasonings. Pepper, Paprika, Cumin, Thyme, etc. are all things you can buy in bulk and store in mason jars!
Think about how much plastic you waste when you buy things like that over and over, opposed to just buying it in bulk and storing it properly! Cost-effective, and sustainable. What more can you ask for?
Hey, hey hey! Thanks for making it down here. What are your favourite sustainable grocery shopping tips? Let us know in the comments below!
- Team Siempre Eco.