The Plan Eat Save team serve up tips to help you beat food waste this Christmas

15 December 2017

With 74 million mince pies and 2 million turkey leftovers thrown away in the UK every year during the festive period, Norfolk County Council’s Plan Eat Save initiative is giving tips on how to reduce food waste this Christmas.

A shocking three quarters of us throw away leftovers during the festive season, so Plan Eat Save is urging people to get savvy, cut down on what they throw in the bin, and make the amount they spend on food this Christmas go that bit further.

Stuart Clancy, Vice Chairman of Norfolk County Council’s Environment, Development, Transport & Waste Committee said: “By following just a few simple steps you can not only cut down on what you throw in the bin, but also save money this Christmas. Try a few of these tips and you’ll be well on your way to buying a few extra presents this year.”

We know that overbuying and cooking too much are two of the main reasons why food gets wasted at Christmas. By following a few simple steps like checking your freezer space, making a shopping list and a meal plan, it’s really easy to reduce how much food gets wasted.

Plan Eat Save have three top tips to help people make the most of their Christmas goodies:

1. Make room in the freezer
During the run up to Christmas start using up items from your freezer to make sure you have extra storage space. You can freeze leftovers like turkey, ham, sausages and even gravy for future use. To find out more about what can be frozen see the Love Food Hate Waste website.

2. Make a list and check it twice before doing your Christmas food shop
By checking your store cupboard essentials beforehand you can often save money by not buying items you already have. Try not to deviate from your list by getting lured in by special offers when you get to the shop. Be brave and break with tradition – if nobody likes Brussel sprouts buy another vegetable instead.

3. Plan, plan, and plan again!
If you’ve got guests coming for Christmas it’s even more essential to plan your meals as it can be quite hard to get the quantities right and it’s easy to get carried away. Often at Christmas we push the boat out and serve a starter and a dessert, so make sure you reduce the portion size of the main meal. With the best intentions there are bound to be leftovers so include them in your plans. Here are some
fantastic leftover recipes to use up common Christmas foods like Stilton, sprouts and turkey.

See the Love Food Hate Waste website for top leftover Christmas foods and recipe suggestions.

1. Turkey – turkey curry, stroganoff, turkey quiche

2. Stilton – broccoli and stilton soup, creamy vegetable crumble, stilton and Brussel sprout quiche

3. Roast potatoes – bubble and squeak

4. Christmas Pudding and mince pies – leftover Christmas pudding truffles, Christmas pudding ice cream

People can follow the Christmas Countdown on the Plan Eat Save social media pages, but as a bonus here are some quick tips to get started:

  • Leftover bread? It’s perfect for bread sauce, make it now and freeze to save time on Christmas Day
  • Store fresh vegetable and drinks in the garage to prevent overcrowding your fridge
  • Make your gravy in advance and put it in the freezer. Sunday roast leftovers provide a perfect base for your gravy. On the day simply add the juices of your roast to finish it off
  • Christmas is busy, so save time by making or buying mince pies in advance and popping in the freezer. They’ll be at your fingertips when you need them 
  • Buy part-baked bread which can be kept in the cupboard and has a longer shelf life than fresh bread 

For more tips, latest recipes and handy hints on how to make your food go further head over to the Plan Eat Save Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Norfolk residents are also reminded to start the year off right by signing up for Plan Eat Save’s Food Waste Challenge online by heading to Following the challenge tips can help families save up to £60 a month – almost £700 a year, or for individuals up to £15 a month or £200 a year.

For political comment

Cllr Stuart Clancy (Conservative) Vice Chairman of the Environment, Development and Transport Committee, on 07837299753 or 01603 754148
Cllr Terry Jermy (Labour) on 01842 630851
Cllr Tim East (Liberal Democrat) on 01603 743241

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