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Study finds that home delivered meal prep is better for the environment than going to the supermarket

1st Feb 2020 / All
Turning packaging into a theatre

When we talk to our customers, and those just thinking about trying meal prep but haven’t done so yet, one thing that regularly comes up is the impact on the environment. In recent years meal prep delivery has been getting a bad environmental rap. However a study by the University of Michigan has confirmed what we already knew, “that meal kits have a much lower overall carbon footprint than the same meals purchased at a grocery store”.

You can read the full study here: https://news.umich.edu/those-home-delivered-meal-kits-are-greener-than-you-thought-new-study-concludes/

Researchers from their School of Environment and Sustainability found that whist meal prep delivery typically uses more packaging, the emissions for supermarket store meals carried 2 kilograms more of carbon dioxide per meal than those of meal prep delivery.

And when you consider that the packaging (including the plastic) can be recycled via your normal curb side collection service, it suddenly starts to look very positive.

One of the primary researchers, Dr Shelie Miller, decided to conduct the research after hearing lots of people saying “Ah, there’s so much plastic and I feel so bad because it’s so terrible environmentally”. She thought “I bet if we take a bigger picture look, they may not turn out to be that bad”.

And when you consider how much of the food in your supermarket is transported in from South America or Australia, when it could be sourced locally, it’s hardly surprising that the carbon footprint is so much smaller for meal prep.

Other advantages of meal prep:

Controlling food waste

It’s easily done, you go to the supermarket only needing one of something. But there is an Buy 6 for the price of 4 offer, which you can’t resist. And you end up throwing 3 away. With meal prep delivery you control the meals, the portions, so that there is no waste. When you consider almost 2 million tonnes of food is wasted in the UK alone every year, this puts a huge strain on the environment.

Cost saving

For all the same reasons above, not being tempted into the multibuy offers at the supermarket can result in you saving money. It’s often said that meal prep delivery is more expensive, but there is often a cost to supermarket shopping that we forget (apart from time).

The fun of reusing something, not just recycling

Recycling is great, and obviously everyone should do more. But before you recycle, think to yourself, can this be reused.

  • The plastic containers can be used for food or storing bits and pieces in the garage.
  • The ice packs can be used for keeping food cool on picnics or cut open and water the plants.
  • The cardboard boxes and packaging can be used for storage or when moving.
  • Most fun of all, encourage your kids to get creative with them. A couple of boxes can quickly become hours of fun. Building a race car or turning into a theatre.

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