November 2, 2020

Plan ahead

While Diwali celebrations are likely to be very different this year, its worth remembering that planning is still key to reducing food waste, saving money and enjoying a stress-free festival. Check the benefits of  meal-planning including practical tips on how to spend less time and money shopping.


Storing your food

Once you’ve bought your food, how you store it can make a huge difference to how long it will keep. The following links will help you to make the most of the food you buy:

  • Get to know your dates  Foods are safe to eat after the ‘best before’ date but may no longer be at their tastiest. Fresh items must be eaten before the ‘use by date’ to avoid health risks.
  • Learn how to store your food  Storing your food in the best place, such as the fridge, freezer or even the cupboard, will help your food stay fresher for longer.
  • The A-Z of food storage  is useful tool to help you know your storage options.
  • Chill the fridge out  will help you to check that your fridge is at the correct temperature.
  • Top freezer tips  The freezer is such a useful tool, it acts as a pause button, giving you more time to eat the food you’ve bought, even your leftovers. Watch the video to see: how to safely freeze and defrost rice  


Battery powered and electric lights:

During Diwali, known as the festival of lights, people light up their homes with lamps, candles and colourful electric lights to signify the triumph of light over dark and good over evil…battery powered and electric lights can make a great and safer alternative to open flames and can last for a long time.

When the batteries do finally run out or electric lights need to be replaced it is important to know how to dispose of them correctly.

Did you know that each year in the UK we throw away around 600 million batteries? Batteries and electrical items should never be placed in either your general waste bin or your kerbside recycling bin or bag. Not only are they harmful to the environment in landfill but batteries can pose a serious fire risk if they touch other metals in the waste or even the vehicle transporting the waste.

Batteries and electrical items need to be collected separately for recycling. Some councils do have an additional separate collection and so check with your local council first. Alternatively, they can be taken to your local recycling centre Leicestershire or Leicester), or a collection point in a Supermarket, DIY store or other local shop. check out the battery recycling locator to find out your nearest point to recycle batteries and electrical items.



Munch it- scrunch it!

Remember…it is always important to recycle as much of the waste you make as possible!

Check what you can recycle from home in Leicestershire, (North West Leicestershire) and Leicester City, and what can be recycled at your local Recycling Centre (Leicestershire or Leicester).

Metal is a valuable resource and is endlessly recyclable. It is collected for recycling by all of our local councils. It is easy to remember to recycle your metal tins and cans and even empty aerosols, but foil can often be forgotten.

Many kinds of foil can be recycled including kitchen foil, takeaway and freezer containers and even the foil around chocolate bars. The colour doesn’t matter as long as it is foil.

A simple way to check is to do the ‘scrunch test’. If it stays ‘scrunched’ then it’s aluminium foil and can be recycled. If it springs back, it contains plastic film and cannot currently be recycled.

Make sure your metals are free from food residue before you recycle them. Give them a quick rinse and wipe in your washing up bowl before popping them in the recycling. Smaller pieces, such as yoghurt pot lids, or foil from your chocolate bar, can be scrunched together to make a larger ball of foil – about the size of a tennis ball. This will keep the foil together and make it easier to be sorted by the machinery.


Will you be buying new this Diwali?

Data from WRAP has recently revealed that in Britain alone, we discarded a whopping 67 million items of clothing as part of lockdown clear-outs. So, it’s worth stopping to think whether your clothing could be altered; repaired; refashioned or upcycled before throwing it out. The Love Your Clothes website has a wealth of advice covering everything from washing your clothes and removing stains to doing simple repairs and alterations, right up to creatively restyling.

Although many charity shops had reopened and were taking donations, they will once again be pausing this service in light of the new lockdown commencing on 5th November. Our advice is to contact individual shops before taking any donations, keep an eye on their website and do please follow their guidance. Never leave clothes in front of a closed charity shop or clothes bank – this is fly-tipping and a criminal offence. The important thing is that clothing and textiles shouldn’t ever be thrown in your general waste or put in your kerbside recycling, unless you have a dedicated textile collection.