A couple months ago, Harvest Hero Jenya reached out to the team with an interesting proposition. Jenya was wondering if she could pick up our compost to feed animals on her farm. Delighted, we eagerly responded. Now, our compost is reused as food for 20 chickens, ducklings, and even a rooster! Even her animals are zero waste :)
Jenya has a passion for reducing waste in all aspects in her life! From carrying around a glass jar to reduce plastic waste, to creating her own natural body oils and even toothpaste, Jenya has plenty of environmentally friendly tricks up her sleeve. We chatted with Jenya to learn some of her no waste habits so we can adopt them into our own lives! We hope you’ll do the same!
Jenya's Tips and Tricks for Reducing Waste
Simple acts like buying a glass jar of mayo instead of a plastic jar, and then reusing that glass jar around the house!
If a fruit or veggie is a little past its prime, just cut off the moldy or rotten part. It’s fine to eat otherwise, and being picky can contribute to waste.
Grow your own herbs, plants, or food! Even if it’s not enough to make a meal, just knowing how much work goes into the simple act of growing a tomato will make you less likely to throw food away :)
Educate yourself on food waste and how it affects our world! The ugly produce movement is doing so much to help. In countries like France, they have regulations where grocery stores have to sell and use leftover produce.
I create my own body lotions with coconut oil, essential oils, and tea tree oil. I even made a natural toothpaste out of baking soda and coconut oil. You get used to it and it does an awesome job.
I don’t do much social media, but when it comes to environmental issues I like to share the message. From an individual’s perspective, it’s really easy to see how your food waste impact affects the world. Simple acts like eating something that’s about to go bad or preserve food will go a long way.
Another thing I do is sharing food with friends. For example, my friend bought hummus from the grocery store that she wasn’t a huge fan of. My boyfriend and I ate it right up! It would’ve otherwise ended up in the landfill.
I try to get all of my appliances used from Craigslist and my clothes used from thrift store. They have perfectly good stuff if you’re willing to look for it. It also saves you a ton of money!
If you’re backed up on produce, try to pickle or can it! It’s coming back into style now, and it’s an amazing way to save food. You can make kimchi, sauerkraut, pickled beets or green beans, or fermented cauliflower. Also, if you have fresh herbs going bad, you can dry them! Whenever I have too much of something in my Hungry Harvest box, I preserve it this way.