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When Zero-Waste Accompanies Us Everywhere We Go

10 June 2024 | By Stéphanie Tremblay
Food fightRecipesReductionTips and tricks

Fighting food waste at home is one thing, but unfortunately, waste doesn’t just stop at our doorstep. The good news is that as consumers, we have the power to reduce this waste even once we step outside. Here are some tips to ensure we carry our good habits beyond our homes.

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At the Restaurant

Our ability to limit food waste within our homes is clear, but we also have a role to play in reducing food waste in the businesses we frequent, such as restaurants.

Don’t hesitate to ask about portion sizes when dining at a new place, as they can vary greatly from one restaurant to another. This can help you avoid ending up with much more food than you can eat. If you feel like indulging but aren’t sure you can finish everything you order, don’t be shy about taking leftovers home!

Additionally, some restaurants provide bread only upon request. So, if you ask for it but don’t plan on eating the entire basket, feel free to take it home as well! This bread, often freshly baked on demand, will be thrown away by the restaurant if not consumed. It will be delicious toasted the next morning or transformed into croutons or breadcrumbs.

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Dinner with Friends and Family

For dinners with friends, especially in the context of a potluck, it’s quite easy to manage the leftovers! Plan a reasonable list of what everyone can bring and try to avoid exaggerating the quantities, as this is often where the problem lies in these types of dinners.

If you’re preparing a green salad, don’t mix it with the dressing until the last moment, or even better, add the dressing directly to your plates to keep the salad fresh if it’s not all eaten. Avoid leaving perishables like meats, especially raw ones, and dairy-based preparations out for too long. Don’t leave your delicious potato salad with mayonnaise in the sun; make sure to store these foods in a cool place as soon as everyone has served themselves.

This way, everyone can bring their containers and take home the leftovers of the dish they brought, or the leftovers can be shared evenly so each person leaves with a small buffet for home.

And if we’re hosting and fear the famous worry of running out of food, we can plan a good amount of raw veggies and dip, and/or bread and cheese, which can be preserved and reused quite well if not consumed during the evening.

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For the famous summer picnic, it’s crucial to be careful about what you bring. Cheeses and meats can’t be consumed later when exposed to heat and sunlight for too long. It’s better to plan sandwiches/wraps or salads and carefully consider the portions, rather than a variety of cheeses and cold cuts that might not all be eaten. Fruits and vegetables that got a bit warm can be the star of your next smoothie, stir-fry, or soup.

Thus, with a few good habits, it’s not difficult to extend the fight against food waste outside the home, whether in the businesses you frequent or in your dinners with friends!

Food Waste Expert

Stéphanie Tremblay

In love with nature, Stéphanie combines her interests in the environment and food in order to raise awareness of the importance of their food choices. Her professional training and experience in environmental education make her a knowledgeable speaker who conveys her passion with enthusiasm and positivism. In her spare time, she can be found in her garden or in the forest, gathering wild edible plants.

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