Christmas is a time of plenty – plenty of food, plenty of wine and, unfortunately, plenty of waste!

A huge number of us have already begun to make changes to the way we shop, prepare, store and use food, to reduce the amount of good food and drink that is thrown away from our homes but there’s no reason to let these good habits slip over Christmas!

Daire Hughes, Mayor of Newry and Mourne District Council, says: “Many of us think we’re guilty of buying and cooking more than we need during the festive period. Avoiding food waste remains important all year round, but given that wasted food costs the average family with children up to £60 per month, saving this money is especially important in the run up to Christmas.”

Luckily Christmas doesn’t have to hit your pocket this year as help is at hand! Love Food Hate Waste (LFHW) offers a wealth of information and tools to help you make the most of all your festive foods. 

Daire adds “This year we are teaming up with LFHW to offer householders our top five tips to help you have a festive yet frugal Christmas.” He ends by saying “When we consider that we can waste the equivalent of up to six meals per week from our homes, we realise that this is a statistic we should focus on reducing rather than increasing during the festive period.”

Council’s top five tips to consider this Christmas include:

Savvy shopping: Think about which items you need and who will be coming to dinner before writing out your shopping list. Meal plan accordingly, and, most importantly, stick to your list when you go shopping!

Perfect portions: count out appropriate portion sizes for everyone at dinner to reduce the risk of cooking too much. Log onto and try the perfect portion planner to help you calculate your meals this Christmas.

Check your dates: When doing your shopping be sure to check the date labels to ensure you are getting the maximum lifespan from your products. “Best Before” is a quality label as flavour or colour may change after this time, whereas “Use By” is a safety label and the item should not be eaten after this date.  

Get Freeeeezzzing!!!: If you buy too much of something, or know you may not get through it all, freeze it - the freezer provides the answer to many of our food waste problems and you’d be surprised at what you can store away! has loads of tips to help you freeze and defrost loads of foods safely!

Lovely leftovers: Use your leftovers to make delicious new recipes. There is a brand new selection of Christmas themed recipes focusing especially on the festive and party season, so have a browse on to discover what handy leftover recipes you can keep up your sleeve for unexpected guests or lazy lunches!

Newry and Mourne District Council would like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas and thank everyone for participating in waste reduction and recycling over the last year.

If you would like any more information over Christmas please contact our Recycling Officer on: 

Tel: 02830313233 or email


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