Food Waste Prevention For the Holidays


We waste a lot of food. To be exact, 2.2 pounds per person per week in Oregon

But did you know that at the holidays, we waste almost 1 pound per person at a single holiday meal (estimated Thanksgiving food waste at ReFED 2022 – The Food Waste Solutions Summit)?  All that wasted food costs you money and has big environmental consequences in greenhouse gas generation, chemical pesticide and fertilizer use, and water and land use.

The good news is it’s easy to reduce that waste:

  1. Plan – consider your holiday menu. Can you avoid having lots of leftovers?
  2. Use – When you do have leftovers, use them. The internet is overflowing with recipes for holiday leftovers geared to all cooking skill levels and food interests.
  3. Share – Prepare to send food home with your guests. We make big, delicious meals to show our friends and family how much we care about them. Extend the love by giving your guests a second meal they can eat later in the week (in a reusable container if possible).
  4. Save – If you’ve got leftovers you can’t use right away, freeze them for later. But, don’t forget them!

For more information, check out GreenState podcast, Ep. 18: Preventing food waste while clearing out holiday leftovers.

Stay tuned for details about 2023 Food Waste Prevention Week April 10- 16.

About Author

Jennifer is a Public Affairs Specialist for the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality

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