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When you cook food or eat a dish, how much food is wasted?

Not just throwing away the remaining bones or other parts that can't be consumed, sometimes you actually throw away a full meal just because you are full.

Or, some of the wasted food is still in the form of raw materials. Because you keep it in the refrigerator for too long, as a result the food ingredients become stale and can't be consumed anymore.

Not to mention if there is a culinary business whose food stocks are not sold out and at the end the stocks must eventually be destroyed.

While there are still many families out there that still live in poverty. Meanwhile, households and restaurants throw away tons of precious food. Therefore, this is the time where zero food waste needs to be applied by individuals and culinary entrepreneurs.

What is Zero Food Waste?

Literally, zero food waste means processing food without leaving waste or wasted parts.

The idea of zero food waste is synonymous with the concept of reducing waste in textiles, cosmetics, and much more. It's just that zero food waste focuses on reducing food waste.

In general, there are three zero food waste efforts that you can implement, there are:

• Reduce: use fewer ingredients and reduce unnecessary ingredients. Cook with the right portion so that no leftover food is wasted.

• Reuse: reuse food leftovers that can still be processed, such as the example in the previous case of boiled milkfish.

• Recycle: leftover food ingredients that can no longer be used, can be used as compost as plant nutrition.

Even though it is quite difficult to do zero food waste, at least by reducing food waste you still can contribute your love to the environment.

In addition to the three general methods above, here are examples of simple zero food waste actions that you or your business can implement starting today!

1. Store Food Properly

The first, most important but often overlooked way is to store food properly. As much as possible, don't let food ingredients become stale or rotten.

The refrigerator is the most ideal place to store food and extend its shelf life. Storing food properly will help your food stay fresh and last longer.

2. Set the Order of Food Stock

When storing food in the refrigerator or cupboard, make sure you arrange it in such a way that the food you have stored will be used earlier.

That way, you can ensure that other food ingredients will be used efficiently and won't expire due to being stored for too long.

3. Plan Monthly Expenditures

When buying groceries that go stale or spoil quickly, make sure you have made a shopping plan correctly.

This is a zero food waste effort to prevent wasted food ingredients. If necessary, you can also make a menu plan for the dishes you will make and details of the ingredients needed.

4. Buy Directly From Farmers

If possible, why not buy groceries directly from the farmers? That way, you will receive fresh fruit, vegetables, fish and meat.

That is, the shelf life of these foodstuffs will be longer. This is because food ingredients in supermarkets have gone through a long distribution process and cut their shelf life.

5. Pay Attention to Food Storage Advice

Some packaged foods include storage recommendations. For example, food should be stored in the refrigerator at low temperatures. Others suggest storing food in special containers.

These instructions are an attempt by the manufacturer to remind you to apply a zero food waste culture to the products you buy.

6. Maintain Food Hygiene

Cleanliness of food can affect its shelf life. Germs and bacteria can make food ingredients rot easily, especially meat and fruit.

If you've just cut a watermelon open and don't eat it all the way through, then store the rest of the fruit in the refrigerator. If necessary, use a special cover to cover the fruit that is already open to prevent decay.

7. Turn it into compost

If all the methods above still leave food scraps, then you can turn them into compost. Compost fertilizer can be made from household waste, soil, water, husk charcoal, lime, and liquid EM4 fertilizer.

You can mix all the leftovers, water, and husks in a large container filled with soil. After mixing and watering with EM4 fertilizer, you can transfer it to your land or garden as compost.

Make sure the rest of the food is covered with soil evenly so it doesn't smell bad.

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