Shoppers stockpiling groceries to prepare for COVID-19 are being warned against wasting food by a leading Australian authority.
Focusing on reducing household waste would save money and create less concern about running out of supplies, according to the Fight Food Waste Cooperative Research Centre chief executive officer Dr Steven Lapidge.
His message is being backed by the South Australian potato industry as it launches its own campaign reminding shoppers of the merits of the humble potato.
Lapidge, who is based at the national Fight Food Waste CRC in Adelaide, wants people to think more carefully about what they actually need to sustain their household cooking, nutrition and the agriculture industry.
“International experience tells us that food becomes much more valued during these trying times, and in turn everyone should focus on reducing their food waste,” Dr Lapidge said.
“We have seen the supermarket shelves cleared of staples and long life products as a result of COVID-19 concerns. “
But he said shoppers could instead be more thoughtfully looking into their fridges and cupboards.
“You can make up a healthy meal for your family without having to visit the shops,” he said.
Lapidge referred to sustainable living websites that shared recipes for ingredients most households already had in their pantry or fridge.
“Simple ideas like grating the stalks of your broccoli into a salad will give you the most nutritious part of that produce while avoiding waste,” he said.
Meanwhile, Potatoes South Australia is launching a five-day social media campaign telling buyers to think about alternatives to emptying supermarket shelves of dry staples like pasta and rice.
“Naturally, potatoes are salt-free, fat-free and low in sugar,” Potatoes South Australia chief executive Robbie Davis said.
“Potatoes have 25 per cent less carbohydrates than pasta, and 50 per cent less than rice. Potatoes have 20 per cent more fibre than pasta and more than double the fibre of rice.”
She said it was important to support South Australian farmers who grow 80 per cent of the nation’s potatoes and are at the forefront of research and development, exploring new industries such as potato vodka and potato puree.
Potatoes can be stored for more than a month in a dark, cool space and Davis said the campaign told people how the vegetable was inexpensive and filling.
“Historically, potatoes have played an important role in nourishing populations during times of difficulty, don’t forget them now,” she said.
For Davis, it was about keeping both the community and the potato industry healthy.
“Now more than ever, we need to make sure we’re filling our bodies with plenty of goodness,” she said.Jump to next article