LIKE many a grandparent, when the family is coming to visit, I buy in extra food so that there is plenty of choice and lots of treats.

Inevitably, that means I am left with unused portions of the treats I had so carefully, and joyfully, bought, or with the extra meal I had made in case everyone was hungrier than usual or in case we didn’t go out for lunch that day.

Sometimes, some food or treats aren’t suitable for freezing, nor am I able to eat them before they go off.

While I feel really bad about throwing food out, what can you do?

A recent conversation reminded me vividly of what I could have done – something I had known of, but in the passage of time, forgotten; a brilliant idea to capture waste food.

You may remember I wrote some time ago about a new venture in Wallingford called the Community Fridge. It is based in the Fountain Bookshop and run by the Ridgeway Church.

If you find yourself in the same situation, having food left over after family visits and not being able to freeze it or eat it before it goes off, or even just plans changing after you have done your shopping so that some of the food is not going to be eaten and isn’t suitable for freezing, you could take it to the Community Fridge.

That will mean that someone else could use rather than letting perfectly good food go to waste.

Similarly, you might drop off leftover fresh food when you clear your refrigerator for your holidays.

Surely that’s preferable to returning home to a smelly kitchen. Call in, too, to find something you might need.

This is not just a scheme for people on low incomes, although it undoubtedly helps them.

This is for everyone to use so that we as a community waste less food.

It is estimated that the average UK family wastes £810 a year by throwing away food and drink which could have been eaten by others.

Businesses can also donate food near its sell-by date.

Unfortunately, donations must not include meat or fish. Opening hours are Tuesday – Friday 9.30am – 4.30pm and Saturday 9.30am – 1pm.

You will find the Fountain Bookshop at 21b St Mary’s Street, Wallingford, opposite the old Pettits store just down the road from Just Trading.

Happy food-saving.

Find out more: