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Freeze, don’t throw

 
Created on 05/07/2016 @ 08:27
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Powys County Council is supporting this year’s Food Safety Week (July 4-10), which aims to help Welshpool residents better understand how to waste less food safely, by making more use of their freezers.

New research from the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has revealed that 68% of UK adults report that they have thrown food away in the past month.

Over two thirds of those who had thrown away food said they have discarded food as it was past its use by date. Other top reasons for throwing food away include buying too much and not eating it, which was reported by 30% of people; and not having the chance to eat food before it went off, which almost a quarter (23%) gave as an excuse for putting food in the bin.

This contributes to the seven million tonnes of food that is wasted in the UK each year which, according to the Love Food Hate Waste campaign, costs each household around £470 annually.

The council is backing the FSA’s campaign to encourage residents in Powys and across the UK to help tackle the problem of food waste by planning ahead and, if necessary, to freeze food within its use by date if there is a chance you may end up throwing it away once the use-by date expires. 

Cllr John Powell, Powys County Council’s Cabinet Member for Environmental Health, said: “Lots of people believe food can only be frozen on the day of purchase, but the freezer is like a pause button and you can safely freeze most foods right up to the use by date. You can even cook defrosted meat into a new meal and freeze it to eat on another day.

“With so much food being thrown away in the UK each year, we want Powys residents to think about how they can use their freezers to their full potential, rather than putting food in the bin.

“While food is kept safe in the freezer, it’s the quality that deteriorates over time, so the FSA recommends eating it within three to six months and checking for any freezing instructions on the packaging. Once defrosted, the pause button is off, so defrost food as and when you need it and eat it within 24 hours of it being fully defrosted.”

For more information on freezing food safely, visit www.food.gov.uk/useby.

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