Going green in the kitchen
Green living is not a fad that will come and go as trends change. It's a lifestyle choice that's good for your health, the environment, and your pocket. When you're aiming to go more green, your kitchen is a great place to start.
Thinking about food waste
According to the Food Standards Agency, 7 million tonnes of food is thrown away in the UK each year, costing an average of £470 per household. When we waste food, we end up spending more money and creating more rubbish - bad news for overflowing landfills and a rapidly heating planet! Before you go to the supermarket, try drafting up a meal plan for the coming week, and listing the exact quantities of food you need. Then, do your best to stick to the list: there's no point opting for a two-for-one deal on bags of apples if you can't get through them all!
If you do end up with leftovers, try getting creative in the kitchen and evolving them into another meal. For example – stew excess vegetable trimmings to make a vegetable stock from scratch, dice your bread to fry into croutons, or turn extra pasta and vegetables into a fuel-filled frittata.
Growing your own produce
By growing produce yourself, you can munch your veggies in peace knowing that the growing process has been natural - no pesticides necessary! Don't have access to outside space? Consider renting an allotment, or growing herbs on your window ledges. While fresh, home-grown veggies are great for your health, they're also good for the planet - the fewer industrial pesticides in circulation, the better.
Buying locally grown items
Apples flown in from South Africa, strawberries from Peru... sometimes it seems the fruit we eat is better travelled than we are! By supporting local growers, you're pumping money back into your own economy and decreasing the size of your carbon footprint. Check the labels on the fruit in your greengrocer to get a feel for what's grown nearby.
Image Credit: Stonehouse Kitchens
Making use of energy efficient appliances
If you're replacing an appliance in your kitchen, check the energy efficiency ratings on the model you're thinking of buying. It's worth taking time to do your research, as it'll slash your energy bills and help the planet. Once you've bought your new appliance, be sure to read the instructions thoroughly - using the right eco settings will make even more of a difference.
Using sustainable materials
Remodelling a kitchen? Think of ways you can make the process more ecologically friendly. From recycled wood, stone and cement to sustainable bamboo, there are lots of ways you can make a planet-friendly choice with the materials you use.
Guest post by Ella Hendrix