In Portugal, every year one million tonnes of food are thrown away, which means that each resident in Portugal wastes an average of 132kg of food per year, causing irreparable environmental damage.

At Christmas time most people increase their consumption; however, awareness of sustainability has never been greater, so maybe this year people will try something different.

Do you have a shopping list?

Ignoring advertising campaigns at Christmas time is not always easy. Also, there are some suggestions for keeping your budget safe with green behaviours.

“Take a look at promotional flyers because it can be an opportunity to save money (especially if you have a large family), but do a critical analysis to see if the high price reductions pay off. And remember that all products must have clear information about the current discounted prices and the prices they had before the discount”, DECO said.

DECO also recommends planning purchases, as “in addition to helping to save money, it also saves time wasted in queues. Shopping online can also help reduce Christmas expenses, as prices are often cheaper and some sales are only available online”.

Sustainable meals

In terms of food, there are interesting suggestions to prevent your food from going to waste, such as using leftovers in creative manners, transforming them in traditional main courses, vegetarian alternatives, desserts and even sweets to eat with the family.

“For example, if you have meat leftover, you can make a pie. From the bread you can make toasts. Also, if you have got very ripe fruit, you can use them to make up smoothies or juices”, DECO said.

According to DECO, there are some important tips to help you enjoy a win-win alliance with your fridge. Leftovers in the fridge (at a maximum of 4º C) can last up to three days, depending on the ingredients. If you are not going to eat them during this period, it is better to freeze them, but don’t freeze food that is already defrosted”.

Additionally, “if you don't want to waste food, check in the fridge before buying, avoiding buying unnecessarily repeated ingredients”, said DECO.


Paula Martins is a fully qualified journalist, who finds writing a means of self-expression. She studied Journalism and Communication at University of Coimbra and recently Law in the Algarve. Press card: 8252

Paula Martins