Are you always missing those ‘use by’ dates, or find yourself throwing away mouldy food you wish you’d enjoyed? Hisense, one of the world’s leading electricals manufacturers, is helping UK shoppers make the most of their appliances when it comes to saving food from the bin! The home appliances giant is continuing its work with WRAP and the Love Food Hate Waste campaign to educate consumers on food waste.
According to Love Food Hate Waste, 41% of our food by weight and 43% by cost is thrown away because it has gone mouldy, mushy or rotten or because it has passed a date label. Freezing food acts like a pause button, which means shoppers can buy themselves a bit more time. Of the 6.6 million tonnes of household food waste generated in Britain each year, 4.5 million tonnes is edible– meaning a whopping 70% of our total food waste could have been enjoyed.
‘Best Before’ dates are used by manufacturers to denote a time by which the food should be enjoyed – past this date, the food can still be eaten but the quality may be slightly diminished. A ‘Best Before’ is typically used for ambient, frozen, dried or canned foods.
Conversely, a ‘Use By’ date is applied to fresh, ready-to-eat and chilled foods and means that the food is considered unsafe to eat after the date stipulated – but it’s worth noting that foods can be frozen right up to the Use By date, so there’s plenty of opportunity to save your favourite foods that might be about to go off.
Arun Bhatoye, Head of Marketing at Hisense UK, explains: “Food waste is one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions because of the journey our food travels to get to our plates.
“Using the freezer to make the most of the food we buy is an easy step we can all take to reducing our carbon footprint. What’s more, plenty of us don’t know how much we can freeze to make our lives a little bit easier! Our product range is packed with features designed to help our customers preserve their food for longer.”
7 foods you didn’t know you could freeze
It’s true! Cake can be frozen in slices – it’s best to put a piece of greaseproof paper between each slice to stop them from sticking together.
Snack lovers rejoice! Your leftover hummus is saved. To freeze, divide into small, airtight containers and defrost in the fridge, which should be set to less than 5°C.
Only 16% of UK shoppers freeze milk, despite it being one of the UK’s top three wasted foods*! Divide milk into small quantities and freeze before the ‘use by’ date. Defrost in the fridge and use up in 24 hours.
If you only need half an onion, never fear – you can chop and freeze the other half and use it straight from frozen.Result!
If you have a few eggs that you won’t get to in time, just crack them into an airtight container, blend lightly and freeze. Not yolking.
Grate hard cheese into an airtight container and pop in the freezer. You can grab a handful when you need it to top pizza, lasagne or for cheese on toast.
Made too much? Don’t fret, freeze cooked pasta in meal-sized portions ready to re-heat when needed.
Helen White, Special Advisor on Household Food Waste at WRAP, recommends removing food from the freezer in good time to allow it to defrost safely in the fridge.
Helen explains: “Never defrost food at room temperature. Always check any on-pack guidance and make sure your food is fully defrosted before cooking it. Once defrosted, you need to use it pronto – within 24 hours, so have a plan to make sure you enjoy it.”