Shopping smarter

Go in with a plan, come out with what you need for healthy and low waste meals

Take a listen

Let’s start out with our second podcast, where we’ll discuss how making small changes to your shopping habits is an important tool for reducing food waste.

Take a look

Check out these videos and learn to shop smarter!

View infographics

Environmental impact of food loss

How thirsty is our food?

Here in Arizona, water is very important, especially for agriculture. Over a third of that water comes from the Colorado River, so it needs to be pumped uphill to get here, using energy. This and other connections in the FEW nexus mean that energy and food prices are closely related.

Download our shopping list template

The shopping list template above is a customizable tool you can print out with all your usual food items. Each week, you can circle those you plan to buy and even organize the template by the rows of the grocery store so it’s easier to follow!

Take action

The takeaway

Shopping smarter to avoid food waste will help you save money – about $1500 a year for an average 4 person family is thrown away through food waste! Keeping that food out of the landfill will also help protect the environment and reduce methane emissions, as well as provide you with more opportunities for healthy eating. Shopping can be an overwhelming experience with the number of choices presented, but go in prepared with our helpful tips and you’ll make better decisions for your health, money, and the planet!

  1. Know what foods you have on hand and what ingredients you’ll need soon
  2. Plan your shopping with a list based on what you need for specific meals for the coming week
  3. Eat a snack before shopping, or sniff the produce section when you start
  4. Avoid impulse purchases caused by hunger, seemingly good deals, and taking a cart when you don’t need one
  5. Shop as often as fits your lifestyle to reduce how much you need to buy each trip and get the freshest available foods


If you’re about to go shopping, keep these tips in mind:

Must-have tools:
  • Shop your kitchen before shopping at the store, keeping in mind meals for the coming week
  • Think about each food you buy as having a destiny, a specific purpose it will fulfill for you, to help avoid buying impulse items, and stick to your shopping list
  • Buy only what you need, preferably in the amounts you need. Buying from bulk bins can help, but don’t get carried away and end up buying too much!
  • If it works with your lifestyle, shop more frequently, but also get less food per trip
  • Don’t shop hungry! Have a snack before you go to curb any cravings for impulse items and junk food, or if you forget, then at least sniff the produce first to help quiet your hunger

Helpful resources

Some additional resources can be found at the following websites: