Did you know that there are over 795 million hungry people in the world? The figure in Nigeria is 12.1 million.
Please forgive me if you despise figures. But I included them in the post to give us a clearer picture of the economic loss we face every time we throw away food. And the evil we do because some people on the street are starving.
Furthermore, food waste degrades our environment. Food waste pollutes the atmosphere.
It is the most significant source of methane gas emissions. Methane gas is a greenhouse gas that depletes the ozone layer.
You will undoubtedly agree with me that food waste is an evil that must be eradicated.
What are the causes of food wastage in Nigeria?
Poor storage facilities: The majority of commercial farmers in Nigeria lose a significant amount of their produce due to a lack of adequate storage facilities for future use or sale.
Poor transportation: Another source of food waste in Nigeria is the poor condition of the country’s roads. This makes it difficult to transport goods for sale. As a result, perishable foods waste.
Insufficient electricity: Refrigeration is one of the most common, simple, and efficient methods of food preservation.
However, due to the country’s insufficient power supply, that freezers are now merely fancy appliances in most homes. This has also greatly increased food waste.
Poor knowledge of food preservation methods: Many people are unaware of basic food preservation methods.
Methods such as canning, drying, curing, and smoking are excellent because they require less skill and energy.
However, many people are unable to apply these simple skills in food preservation. As a result, in the absence of electricity, their food goes to waste.
Unplanned and excessive purchasing: Some people go grocery shopping without a shopping list.
And the appropriate quantity to purchase for use within a specific time frame.
A lot of food is wasted as a result of this act. Because some foods spoil when they are not properly preserved. Especially those that are perishable.
Excess cooking: In some households, food is prepared in excess of the amount required for consumption.
When these foods are not properly preserved, they spoil. Particularly when the electricity is unstable.
Read also: Examples Of Food And Kitchen Waste
Lack of a reuse and recycle culture: The majority of Nigerians lack a reuse and recycle culture.
What I mean is that it is common to see people throwing away food after it has been left overnight.
This is because the food’s flavour has changed or it is no longer fresh. These people do not realise that such food can be reused by improving the taste. Or recycle the alleged waste for other purposes.
How you stop food wastage in Nigeria?
Before going to the grocery store, it is critical that you do the following. Examine your pantry, storeroom, food shelves, and refrigerators.
Take stock of the foods you still have, the ones you need right now, and the best amount to buy. This way, you can avoid excess and impulse purchases.
Moderate cooking: Develop the habit of preparing the appropriate amount of food to be eaten at a specific time. This way, you avoid having leftovers that would otherwise be thrown away.
Create a culture of reuse: we frequently classify foods as leftovers when they stay over. However, certain simple techniques can be used to preserve or improve the taste and freshness of food.
Create a recycling culture: Foods that are no longer edible due to spoilage should not be thrown away.
Instead, they can be composted and used to maintain household gardens and farms. If you have no use for such waste, you can sell it or donate it to farmers.
Donate food: Given the number of people who die from hunger every day. It is preferable to donate excess food to the needy than to let it go to waste.
Read also: Advantages And Disadvantages Of Food Waste
Food waste occurs as a result of the government’s inability to provide farmers with basic necessities. Such as good roads, electricity, and storage facilities, among other things.
This convenience facilitates the preservation and supply of perishable farm produce. As a result, the government should improve in these areas.