Stop Food Waste Day Q&A: Paul Knight

Stop Food Waste Day Q&A: Paul Knight

Paul Knight, Contract Manager – Catering and Retail, University of Sussex
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  1. What’s your take on all the attention food waste is getting lately?

I think that the current focus on food waste is fantastic. On a local level we have regular pop ups appearing on our University campus from ‘The Real Junk Food Project’,  which is a global movement aiming to abolish surplus food through a variety of ‘pay as you feel’ concepts. They work with local partners to intercept food, which is destined for landfill and redistribute it to various groups for sale.

On a personal level, our weekly food shopping bill seems to be getting more and more expensive so reflecting upon any food waste that we have at home is becoming a regular habit, to help save money.

  1. What are your best tips to make it easy to reduce food waste in the kitchen?

As a family we are far more conscious about what we buy from supermarkets now, as well as how often we go shopping. Although a big weekly shop always seemed like a good idea we found that we were buying a lot of food that wasn’t being eaten within its ‘use by’ date, generally because there was so much food in the fridge that we couldn’t see when something was going out of date.

We now tend to buy less food on our weekly shop and instead buy during the week to keep food fresh.

We also freeze more food now, which helps to keep our food waste down to a minimum.

 

 

  1. What is one small change every person can make in their daily lives to make a big difference?

Cook meals that are of a sensible size, which will reduce having to throw out any leftovers.

  1. What is your favourite way to repurpose leftovers?

With left over rice for example, we tend to mix vegetables with it along with various spices and enjoy it as an accompaniment to a home-made curry.

  1. Outline the activity taking place at your site for Stop Food Waste Day.

We are going to be using the opportunity of Stop Food Waste Day to celebrate the success of Winnow being used at site (introduced back in 2015). We have reduced food production waste by 69% and it continues to support production wastage levels below 1%. 

We are planning to expand our options on our “Too Good to Go” app, which discounts meals at the end of the day to avoid them going in the bin. The expansion will see the inclusion of vegetarian options. 

We also want to support students in their weekly planning of meals so they can look at reducing food waste at home. To enable this we will be publishing an example menu plan for a week on line. We will also be doing a cooking demo on the day to share practical ways to cook with leftovers.

Paul Knight, Contract Manager – Catering and Retail, Chartwells - University of Sussex
Stop Food Waste Day 2018