Living sustainably may sound daunting but it doesn’t have to be! I found six apps sure to cut the work on your behalf substantially. Try out any of these apps and you’ll be on your way to a greener life!
A dating app but for the food in your fridge. The OLIO app connects you with people in your area who are trying to reduce food waste. How? By sharing any over abundance of groceries, cleaning products or anything that could potentially go unused. All you do is take photos of the item you’d like to share and your neighbor’s can connect with you to arrange a pickup time. They have even adapted to the pandemic by adding a safety guide so that you can continue giving your neighbors a hand in the safest way.
OLIO is free and available on iOS and Android.
FUN FACT – Olio is a traditional Spanish stew created in order to prevent food waste.
No Waste almost seems like a second grocery scanner. It literally has a scanner that you use on the barcodes of your groceries to catalog them and be able to access your fridge through your phone. There’s no need to buy anything and if it doesn’t have your grocery in the database you can simply type in the expiration date that way not one thing is lost or gone to waste. When you finish any of your food you go in and note that it has been completely consumed and the best feature it has is the “Consumption” tab that will keep track of the percentage of the food you buy has been consumed and the percentage that has gone to waste overall. A great app if you are looking to hold yourself more accountable in reducing food waste!
Sorry Android users, this free app is only available on iOS right now.
It’s no secret… it’s better for our environment to recycle things versus tossing them in the trash to end up in our landfills. The problem for many of us is knowing exactly what to recycle and where.
iRecycle makes finding those recycling centers so easy.
It’s a free app that uses your phone’s GPS to find the nearest location to recycle what you are trying to get rid of.
There is a huge list of items, everything from batteries, to hazardous materials, to paper and electronics… some things you never thought to recycle.
Click on the item you’d like to recycle and the app pulls up a registry of locations that recycles the item. You’ll get the location’s address, phone number, website and a list of what is accepted.
Of all the locations I’ve chosen, the information has been current. But these days, things can change very quickly. So to be safe, I suggest calling or visiting the company’s website to ensure the information is accurate.
- Seasonal Food Guide site and app
Seasonal Food Guide is a simple way to know what your body needs right now! It tells you what foods are in season in your state each month.
Eating food that is in season gives you the best options for taste and nutrition. Did you know that food contains its maximum amount of vitamins when it’s in season? It also has more flavor, is better for the community, and has a lower carbon footprint because it doesn’t require as much transportation, refrigeration, etc. to go from the farm to your table.
Back to the Seasonal Food Guide; it’s a free site and app.
It’s very easy to use; No need to sign up, just choose your state, the month and food you’re looking for. You can also choose your favorite foods and the site will tell you when they are in season and the best way to choose the food.
For example, ever wonder how to know the watermelon you choose is at its ripest, sweetest moment? According to the Seasonal Food Guide, you want to look for darker, green melons that feel heavy and sound hollow when tapped.
If you’re considering planting your own food, we have a planting calendar with everything from when to plant what, when to harvest and tips on planting.
This site is an extension of the Seasonal Food Guide. It gives you even more insight into your food! It’s like an encyclopedia on the foods you choose, including the benefits, how to choose it, how to cook it, even store it. Footprint also gives you fun facts, the sustainability of the food and it helps you figure out your “foodprint” and how to reduce it.
- . PlantSnap
Starting a garden or planting trees are at the top of the list when it comes to lowering your carbon footprint. The trees remove carbon dioxide from the air, store it in the trees and soil, and releases oxygen back into the atmosphere.
PlantSnap helps you identify plants, trees, flowers, even weeds… you’d be surprised at how many nutritious, edible weeds you may have growing right in your yard!
But if you don’t know the names of these greens, you don’t really know how to care for it.
This can also help you figure out which plants are edible and which you should not ingest.
To use the app, just snap a photo or use an existing photo from your image gallery. The app will give you the best possible matches.
PlantSnap also plants new trees when we share photos!
This app is free, although they do have a paid version that gets rid of ads and avoids the daily snap restriction of 25. You also need to register for an account to use the app.
If you’d like to start your own plant oasis, we have a planting calendar that shows you the best time to plant your favorite veggies, along with tips to help ensure a successful harvest.
These may all seem like small steps, which is the point of making sustainability more feasible. I believe that every conscious choice helps get us closer to zero waste and makes lowering our carbon footprint more likely.
What new apps are you using to help you reduce waste? Email me! I’d love to try them out!