Here at BoroughBox, the team is on a mission – not purely of artisanal food discovery, but of seriously tackling food waste.

In the UK alone, almost 10 million tonnes of food is wasted every year. Globally, the combined impact of food wastage contributes to almost 7% of all greenhouse gas emissions.

In January the British government announced £1 million funding to tackle food waste in households and supply chains. A pledge resonant with our own ethos - never let good food go to waste.

It is important to quote and note cultural anthropologist, Margaret Mead, however - ‘Never, ever depend on governments or institutions to solve any major problems. All social change comes from the passion of individuals.’

As major Mead fans, and with this in mind, we put our heads together, and compiled five easy, fun and delicious ways (that we can all enjoy) to fight food waste –

  

Get Green

green tomatoes

Take inspiration from gardener Lee at YouTube’s popular Project Diaries channel – you may have spied him on BBC’s Springwatch earlier this year. Every week, Lee visits his local greengrocer and takes away, free of charge, a bag filled to the brim with fresh fruit and vegetables, that are past their best - also known as food waste.

Of course, he doesn’t eat them – some are mouldy, and generally no longer delicious. Lee removes the seeds, plants them up and lets nature take its course – a couple of months later, he’s got his garden-fresh harvest ready to eat. 

Tomatoes, courgettes, potatoes, garlic - you can grow all of them here in the UK. One of the BoroughBox team has actually grown her own heirloom tomatoes from a lunchtime salad.

As an added bonus - with the crop ready to harvest as and when you desire, there’s less food waste on the consumption end too.

 

Keep Cool

potato wedges2

Drop the temperature low. If you’ve got too many vegetables to get through in the coming week, you can just prep them and freeze them – ready to use at whim.

Onions love being chopped and frozen, leaving them ready to go straight to the pan from the freezer - it’s a great time saver. Chopped, raw onions will last for up to eight months in the freezer.

 Raw potatoes on the other hand don’t freeze so well, but freeze-ahead sweet potato wedges, creamy cheddar mash and cheesy dauphinoise are all a delight. Freeze-ahead roasties are so easy too - so they’re almost ready, just in time for when you need them. Here’s a tried and tested freeze-ahead roasties recipe, courtesy of BBC Good Food.

 

Solve a Mystery

 mystery box

Combining gastronomic discovery with food waste fighting are two solid reasons that led BoroughBox to create its fantastic Mystery Box.

For £9.99 you will receive over double the value of delicious, award-winning food and drink – we’ll pick them for you, so who knows what you’ll discover and love.

The box will be filled with items that for one reason or another have led them to our Mystery Box selection – from scuffs on packaging to simply being end of the line - they’re all still wonderful. 

Rest assured, everything in a Mystery Box is well within its shelf life, so you can expect every item to taste just as fantastic as all our products elsewhere on the BoroughBox website, but for a fraction of the price. We’re proud to call it an artisanal bargain.

 

Fermented Friends

kraut2

Back in the days when food and fridges were less accessible, prolonging the life of foods that would spoil was pretty important - and often it transpired, the food tasted better fermented than fresh. With that as inspiration, time to look through your fridge and get creative. Surprisingly, many foods can be fermented in just a few days, and you don’t need any specialist equipment to do it.

If you’ve ever been stuck with a cabbage that’s been left looking sad in your crisper for weeks on end - try a batch of sauerkraut or spicy kimchi.

 For sauerkraut, literally all you need is cabbage, some salt and a glass jar. Three days later, crack open a beer (and your home-fermented sauerkraut) and it’s like you’ve landed in Munich. Sadly, in 2020 it’s the closest anybody will get to Oktoberfest.

Don’t believe how easy it is? Here’s a link to how to make your very own sauerkraut. You can also get creative in the kitchen by giving pickling a go. Make a simple brine solution and you're ready to go! You can pickle cauliflower, green beans, cucumber, garlic, ginger, asparagus, and even strawberries. We love this Epicurious Guide on how to pickle pretty much anything.

 

Passionate Products 

urban cordial 

Discover new delicious products from brands on their own food waste mission - as the majority of food waste happens ahead of produce reaching your kitchen.

At BoroughBox, we stock a number of food waste warriors; brands we truly believe in and want to see thrive. Urban Cordial, Rubies in the Rubble and Spare Snacks are all made with surplus and unloved fruit and veg. 

Of course, good ethics don’t just stop at food waste - once you find a brand that is conscious of its food waste and impact on the wider world, chances are you’ll discover its passion about doing good in more ways than one. Like Spare Snacks, it doesn’t simply put surplus veg into recyclable crisp bags - it will point you in the direction of your nearest recycling centre too.