News | 15 December 2021

Tips for minimising food waste these holidays

The holiday season is a time to have fun and indulge a little. But did you know that our waste increases by 40 percent during the summer holidays? A part of that is increased food waste, but it doesn’t have to be.

Check out our tips on reducing food waste during the holiday season.

A decorated Christmas tree with table in foreground topped with pavlova and plates of food and people serving it onto their plates.

Too much meat for the barbecue?

Have a tray of beef, pork, or chicken, but you don't need it all for one meal? While it's still fresh, separate, label, and freeze.

Pre-plan and estimate how much meat/veges will be eaten. For large barbecue parties, divide uncooked items into batches and only keep one batch out of the fridge at a time, to keep food at its freshest.

Become a freezer champion

Buying in bulk and freezing fresh ingredients is a great way to save money, reduce food and packaging waste, reduce travel emissions to the supermarket, and reduce meal prep time – all in one!

Label and date each item. This will help you remember what you’ve got later down the line, and let other household members know what’s in the freezer.

To save space, repack items into containers that stack neatly so you can use all corners of your freezer.

Freeze items as soon as you can with the coldest temperature possible. Avoid slow freezing if possible as that will lower the quality of the food by damaging its cells.

Check out Love Food Hate Waste's guide to freezing leftovers.

Old crates turned into a table, with lilac purple vase with flowers in the middle, and place settings on top of lilac clothe napkins.

Make it a group activity

Bring out your inner advocate in subtle ways this summer. Be vocal about your intentions to reduce as much food waste as possible at parties and ask for everyone’s participation.

Make it a family game to see who can reduce the most food waste during the holidays. Do a fun leftover cooking activity with friends and family after a big event. Make it a goal to reduce food waste when traveling and camping.

Serve mindfully

While it’s time to indulge and enjoy, be smart with how much food you bring to the table. Large portions of food sitting at room temperature will go bad much sooner than if smaller, more realistic portions are set out.

Instead of putting out giant portions, break your dishes up into smaller bowls or containers that can stay fresh in the fridge. Then refill and restock when items on the table run low. This way you’ll avoid food sitting out and any remaining portions can go straight in the freezer.

A large dish covered in foil with a ham and a person's hands slicing it up with a knife and fork, a baking dish with roast potatoes in front, and various other dishes and jugs on the table.

Get creative with your leftovers

Got lots of leftovers to deal with before heading off on holiday? Don’t waste them, eat what you can while it’s fresh and freeze the rest. Fire up the barbecue and turn your leftover Christmas meat and veges into easy Boxing Day fritters.

Check out the LFHW website to find a recipe that uses up your specific leftover ingredients. This website also has lots of other tips and ideas on how to make the most of your food!